'Storm Chasers' Joel Taylor's funeral set for Monday

The cause of death is still unknown.

ByABC News via logo
January 26, 2018, 10:46 AM

— -- "Storm Chasers" star Joel Taylor will be laid to rest early next week, according to a statement from his family.

Taylor, whose cause of death is still unknown, was reportedly aboard a Royal Caribbean cruise ship when his body was discovered earlier this week. He was 38.

The funeral home working with the family told ABC News, "Joel has been released in San Juan and is on its way home to Oklahoma. His funeral service will be held on Monday at 2 p.m. at the First Baptist Church of Elk City, Oklahoma."

Royal Caribbean did not immediately return a request for comment, but the cruise line released a statement to People magazine, which confirmed that Taylor had been aboard one of its ships and which read, “We extend our most sincere and heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the 38-year-old male guest from the United States who died while on board Harmony of the Seas. A member of our Care Team is providing support and assistance to his family."

The San Juan, Puerto Rico, division of the U.S. Coast Guard where the ship was docked earlier this week when Taylor was discovered is also investigating his death.

"While we do not have all the details at this time, the Coast Guard is conducting a preliminary investigation following up on the report made by the cruise ship and in cooperation with the FBI, local authorities and industry partners to look into this incident," the Coast Guard said in a statement.

ABC News reached out to the FBI for comment but did not immediately hear back.

On Tuesday night, Taylor's friend Reed Timmer was the first to speak out about the news of his "best friend's" death.

"RIP my best friend and storm chasing partner, Joel Taylor," he tweeted late Tuesday. "I am shocked and absolutely devastated by the loss of my incredible, caring friend. We chased so many intense storms, and I wish we could have just one more storm chase. I'll miss you forever, Joel. We lost a legend."

Others in the meteorology community also expressed grief over the death of the former Discovery Channel star.

Discovery Channel, the network that launched Taylor into stardom from 2008 until 2012 in "Storm Chasers," also released a statement to ABC News.

"We are so saddened to hear about Joel’s passing. We will always remember him fondly as an incredible meteorologist and driver of 'The Dominator.' Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this difficult time," a spokeswoman for the network stated.