ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - The father of a former Marine says he was notified by the U.S. State Department that his son was killed in Syria while fighting for a Kurdish militia battling the Islamic State group.

David Taylor Sr. told The Associated Press on Tuesday that his son David Taylor told only a high school friend about his plans to join the Kurdish group, and he swore his friend to secrecy. Taylor's father says he didn't even know of his son's plans until after he had arrived in Syria earlier this year.

A Kurdish militia group released a video saying Taylor was killed on July 16.

Taylor's high school friend emailed Taylor's father after he learned of the death. The friend said Taylor believed the Islamic State group needed to be stopped.