High school senior works as Clark County's youngest deputy coroner

Taylor had to complete a 40-hour death investigation class in Indianapolis to get the job as...
Taylor had to complete a 40-hour death investigation class in Indianapolis to get the job as deputy coroner. (Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3 News)
Updated: Feb. 16, 2018 at 8:55 PM EST
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Taylor is currently a senior in high school, but has plans to continue here education after...
Taylor is currently a senior in high school, but has plans to continue here education after graduation. (Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3 News)
The worst part of the job is the smell, according to Alexis. (Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3...
The worst part of the job is the smell, according to Alexis. (Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3 News)

CLARK COUNTY, IN (WAVE) - Many high school students have a part time job these days. Some scoop ice cream, others sell clothes. But Alexis Taylor, 18, has a job most people aren't dying to get into.

Taylor spends hours, several days a week inside Scott Funeral Home working as a deputy coroner for Clark County.

Like most high school seniors, much of Taylor's day is spent in class. But when it comes time to trade her student ID for a work ID, Alexis lights up.

"Anytime we get an autopsy, I'm like 'yes!', Taylor said. "Like, it's so weird that I get so excited to go to them."

The Charlestown senior said she stays busy at Scott Funeral Home whilst completing her internship with the Clark County Coroner. The internship began in August 2017.

Taylor told WAVE 3 News there's never a shortage of things to do.

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"Clean the body really well to prep them for an embalming," Taylor said, showing the equipment they use to prepare bodies for testing or for funeral preparations.

The people she sees at work aren't always lively but she said it's work she's been interested in from years of watching crime shows, like Criminal Minds.

"One thing you do not get in a show is the smell," Taylor said. "The smell will get you."

But being a deputy coroner isn't Taylor's only goal.

"A month or more ago, she came to me and she's like, 'So what do you have to do to be a deputy coroner?," Clark County Coroner Billy Scott said. "And I said, 'you've go through this 40 hour, medical legal death investigation class in Indianapolis.' You have to pass a test at the end of it. It's not the easiest test, a lot of people don't pass it the first time."

Taylor passed the test.

"My mom actually came with me and I ran to her and said 'look mom! I got it, I passed," Taylor said.

Taylor now works as Clark County's youngest deputy coroner. Among her duties, running toxicology reports and helping with autopsies.

"I didn't expect her to be as good as she's turned out to be. She has a very bright future ahead of her," Scott said.

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A few months shy of graduating high school, dual credit classes and working alongside Scott and a regional forensic pathologist have Taylor well on her way to fulfilling her dream of becoming a forensic pathologist.

"Ever since I was I was about 10 years old, my mom was like 'Oh that'll change, you're not going to want to do that.' And here I am, and I love doing it," she said.

Though Scott jokes around that he hopes she changes her mind about forensic pathology so he can hire her on full-time, he said he's very proud of her and what she will do in the future.

"I can see her sending me the emails with the cause of death and toxicology reports and it's Dr. Alexis Taylor. So I'm excited," Scott said.

When she graduates, Taylor said she plans to attend Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis or Indiana University - Southeast to study to be a forensic pathologist.

Copyright 2018 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.