In Memory

Robert "Bob" Taylor VIEW PROFILE


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12/01/10 12:03 AM #1    

Karen Jennings (Morlan)

I remember him as a nice man with a kind smile.  Condolences to his family.

Sincerely   Karen Jennings Morlan

12/04/10 08:19 PM #2    

Carole Halvorson

    I can't say it any better than this and I have Cathy's permission to download this, Carole.

      Written in memoriam, Monday, November 30, 2010.   

      As a part of every Thanksgiving Day in recent memory, a network will trot out Jimmy Stewart’s, “It’s a Wonderful Life,” and no matter how many times you’ve seen it, you can once again be transformed by seeing the influence of one man upon his community.  At the end of a day of Thanksgiving and the annual reminder that doing good is better than doing well, the soul of such a man departed his body.  Bob Taylor--husband, father, grandfather, brother, cousin, friend, teacher, mentor, colleague, actor, chef,--came to this earthly journey’s end. 

      I try to imagine what my life would have been like without having Bob in it, and I realize that he taught me, again and again, how to make life better!

      I first knew Mr. Taylor as my Spanish teacher at Hemet High School.  Actually, I was in junior high, and taking the high school class.  Here was this totally non-threatening teacher who seem to applaud a student’s tiniest venture into a new language.   And then, what news shook the school.  Bob Taylor was to marry Helen Miner!  My goodness, we knew them both!  I think we junior high school girls were jealous, but maybe we were only amazed that two people could find the love of their life at Hemet High School.

      About this same time, I got bitten by the Ramona Pageant bug, and from seventh grade to senior year, I made room for the Ramona Pageant each spring.  Bob, of course, put in many more years than I, playing Father Serra, and Juan Canito.  I can’t imagine what else he did for the pageant, but he was there, supportive, from the time I left Hemet in 1963 to the time I returned in the 1981.  Years and years of contribution!

      I became his colleague by teaching at Hemet High School starting in 1981. During the eighties, Bob and Helen fine-tuned AFS fund-raising into an art.  Large dinner parties designed by the exchange students and prepared to perfection by Bob and Helen and a small crew of helpers were highly anticipated social events.  I once heard Bob say to a student from South America, “You plan the menu, and I will do the rest.”  These students took home memories that they will carry always because of Bob’s generosity and goodness.

      Now could it be my love for France and French food might never have developed without Bob and Helen’s fascinating recounting of various trips to France, complete with pictures?  I am still working on my French, and I will get there again someday, and for me, France won’t go away.  The same way that it wouldn’t go away for Bob.  Sarah, you too, found France through your dad. That is just another way he held such influence with so many of us.

      And, of course, there is a direct connection between things French and French food.  A keen appreciation of food is a fabulous habit, and it is best learned through food preparation. Fabulous meals at restaurants are to be savored, but every meal at home becomes an opportunity to do something well.  I remember once bringing a homely little bread pudding to a supper at Bob and Helen’s.  Bob took it to the kitchen, warmed it, and served it with Grand Marnier poured over it.  Magnifique!

      Finally, my memories are incomplete without my saying how I have admired the Taylors as a family.  Ever since I first knew them, they were a multi-generational phenomenon that operated like a single-celled animal.  All are individual and all are a part of the whole.  The thread of connection is strong and their love and support of each other is great. 

      On their recent trek to Oregon, seven of them joined my mother and me at a lunch at Henry’s in downtown Portland.  They ordered seven meals of great variance, but then returned to Powell’s Bookstore for a satisfying book hunt.  While I can imagine seven people deciding to do one thing on a certain day, this group had been traveling together well over a week, and had more places to go.  Wonderful! It really does fill me with wonder!

      Oh, it is so hard to think that times like the ones we remember will never come again!  We will hold the memories in our hearts.  Bob Taylor made a difference.  People’s lives were enriched because he was a part of their world.   What a legacy!

      Robert Taylor, we will miss you, miss you, miss you. 

      Catherine Bennett

12/04/10 10:07 PM #3    

C. L. Jarusek

A great teacher and a great man, I think most of us were either in his classes or some other activity.  I had three years of French With Bob Taylor and he was the advisor in Key Club when I was a member.  I hope that today there are teachers that follow the model that Mr. Taylor set by his teaching and community activity.  RIP Mr. Taylor, there are many of us who will remember you fondly.


C.L. Jarusek, 1963

04/22/11 08:25 PM #4    

Meradene Brown (Gray)

I'm so glad Mr. Taylor made it as a guest on this website.  He was one of my favorite teachers in high school.  Three years of French enabled me to skip the first year of college French.  Since every credit hour was counted in both time and money, I was grateful.  I remember Mr. Taylor as being one of the kindest teachers and kindest people I have ever know.  Sincere condolences to his family and friends.  You were priviledged to be close to one very special person.  Meradene Brown Gray

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