Those of you who read my blog regularly already know that I moved my husband Bill to a nursing home at the end of September because I could no longer care for him at home. If you’re new to this blog, you can read more about that here. He may have been declining even before he moved to the nursing home. He wasn’t eating as much, and because he was losing strength, he was getting harder for me to lift.
After the move, his health steadily declined. His appetite continued to decrease, and as a result, he lost a lot of weight and became very weak. Last Friday, he quit eating altogether, and early yesterday morning, he passed away. Below is his obituary along with a poem I wrote that will be included in the program for his service. You’ll also find a link to a recording of me singing a song I’ll try to perform during the service.
Bill L. Taylor October 18, 1942-October 30th, 2012
Bill L. Taylor, 70, longtime resident of Fowler, Colorado, passed away on October 30th, 2012 in Sheridan, Wyoming. At his request, a graveside service has been scheduled for Monday, November 5th, at 11:00 a.m. at the Fowler cemetery.
He was born in Fowler, Colorado, on October 18, 1942 to Marlyn William Taylor and Francis Maxine Smith Taylor. At an early age, he was stricken with rheumatoid arthritis which affected his legs and eyesight. He attended the School for the Deaf and Blind in Colorado Springs, graduating in 1963. He then attended Adams State College in Alamosa, Colorado, and ColoradoStateUniversity in Fort Collins where he received both an A.A. degree in 1968 and in 1969, a B.S. degree in business administration and business data processing.
He then moved to California in 1969. He was employed by SwimQuip in El Monte as a computer programmer. In 1971, while still working at SwimQuip, he started a company called Tashi which built closed-circuit television systems for the visually impaired. He was later hired by J.B.Lansing in Northridge as systems manager. After being laid off in 1985, he worked with his sister Sandy in South Pasadena, doing transcriptions.
He later returned to Fowler, Colorado, where he opened The Fowler Computer Store which operated for ten years. He also invested in real estate, managed properties, and served on the city council and chamber of commerce.
On September 10, 2005, he was united in marriage to Abigail L.
Johnson, (Abbie) of Sheridan, Wyoming, where they took up residency. He suffered a stroke in January of 2006 and again in January of 2007 but survived both with limited capacity, being paralyzed on one side. In spite of adversity, he and Abbie lived happily in Sheridan until his death. He enjoyed playing chess and other games, reading, sailing, and listening to sports on the radio. He was a great inspiration to all who knew him.
He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Edwin, who died at age one. He is survived by his wife Abbie, two sisters: Sandy Taylor of South Pasadena, California, and Shirley Thayer of Lady Lake, Florida, and two grandnieces. Memorials can benefit the SheridanSeniorCenter at 211 Smith Street, Sheridan, Wyoming82801 or the Fowler Historical Society at 114 Main Street, Fowler, Colorado, 81039.
Soft, gentle, they caressed me,
once milked cows, fed livestock, gathered eggs,
tapped computer keys in a busy office,
glided back and forth along Braille pages,
placed a ring on my finger, as he said, “I do.”
When one hand no longer worked,
the other was just as reassuring.
Now, they’re both gone
but will be remembered.
Contrary to what the song says, I’m already walking in the sun. I’ve had to deal with the inevitability of Bill’s passing since Friday, and I’m finally at peace, knowing he has gone to a better place and is smiling down on me while I’m writing this and reaching for yet another Kleenex. Every once in a while, I’ll still succumb to what author Larry McMurtry calls a bomb of grief, but life goes on, and I think that’s the way Bill would have wanted it.