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Wilbur A. Taylor
June 26, 1936 ~ November 11, 2023 (age 87) 87 Years Old
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Wilbur went to be with the Lord on Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2023, at the age of 87 at his home in Eagle, Wisconsin with his wife, Jackie at his side, after battling mesothelioma. He was born June 26, 1936, in Westerville, Ohio, the son of Charles and Rosetta Taylor (Calhoun) of Westerville, Ohio. He was preceded in death by his first wife and mother to his children, Frances Jean (Williamson) and two sisters, Lillian Gordon and Mildred Walker. He is survived by daughters Valerie Waller and Vivian Lopez (husband Eric) of Forest Grove, Oregon; Vicki Hoppe (husband Jeff) of Alpine, California; Verna Taylor of San Diego, California; his son, Wilbur Taylor, Junior (wife Kim) of Santee, California; ten grandchildren and fifteen great-grandchildren.
He graduated from Olentangy High School in 1955 and served in the Army (Ohio National Guard) from 1954 to 1956. Wilbur studied voice and trumpet at Otterbein College until 1956 when he enlisted in the Navy as a machinery repairman. His duty stations included Long Beach, California (1957), where he was assigned to the USS Mansfield as part of Operation Hardtack I at Enewetak; (1963) Johnstown, Pennsylvania as an instructor at the Marine & Navy Training Center; (1967) Norfolk, Virginia where he was assigned to the USS Vulcan; (1968) Bremerton, Washington aboard the USS Puget Sound with plank ownership; (1969) Newport, Rhode Island to recommission and retrofit the USS Luce; (1971) Corpus Christi, Texas in the Associated Degree Completion Program, which he completed at Del Mar College; (1973) Kingsville, Texas on shore duty as Chief Master at Arms of the mess hall; and finally San Diego, California aboard the USS Ajax (1979) until retirement in 1980.
Besides his military career as a machine repairman, Wilbur had a roofing company, was greens keeper of a golf course and associate pastor and choir director at the First Church of the Nazarene in Corpus Christi, Texas, taught Machinery at San Diego City College and was a long-haul truck driver. He was a gifted tenor and sang in many church choirs and joined The Commodores, a 1970’s barbershop chorus in Corpus Christi. He enjoyed playing golf, scrabble and casino games like blackjack and craps. He was a member of the St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Oak Creek, Wisconsin.
While living in Poway, California, he received his bachelor’s degree in industrial education from Southern Illinois University in 1988. In 1992, he moved to Oak Creek, Wisconsin with his second wife, Jacquelyn (Hedke) of Oak Creek, and later settled in Eagle, Wisconsin until transferred to his final duty station in Heaven.