Published in the June 19, 2015 edition
MELROSE — William “Bill” Taylor, 94, died at the Melrose-Wakefield Hospital on Sunday, June 14.
Bill was born and grew up in Fall River. He attended Fall River schools and left to join the Army. His military career took him to the Panama Canal then to Europe where he was a forward observer in the artillery.
He was part of the Normandy invasion and spent time in France and Belgium. He fought in the Battle of the Bulge where he earned a Bronze Star for heroic service and bravery in combat.
He returned to the US and was assigned to work with the U.S. Army and Air Force as a radar specialist.
He met his beautiful bride, Sarah, and they were married in 1958. He became an instant father to four daughters, Bernice, Janice, Judith and Jacalyn. They moved from Somerville to New York then back to East Boston. While working at Fort Banks, their first son William was born. Two years later James was born. They moved to Malden and then settled in Melrose.
After retiring from the military, William became a manager at Kennedy’s, a deli in downtown Melrose. When Kennedy’s closed, he tried a few other jobs and then chose to be a bus driver for the MBTA, a position he loved and stayed at for over 15 years. He won an award for safe and accident free driving during his entire MBTA career.
After retirement they moved to a “gated community with five bedrooms” as he would say, in Florida. They enjoyed times with the Johnsons and Pages and their great grandchildren. He loved working with Joe “on the job” as the Foreman.
Sarah wanted to come home, so he followed her back to Massachusetts. They settled in Saugus. Sadly, the love of his life, Sarah, passed away in 2012. He then moved to Marlborough with his granddaughter, Colette, and her family. As part of their family, he thrived and was happy. He enjoyed many silly times with Aidan and Payton and shared his military stories with Kip.
William is remembered for throwing great 4th of July parties with Sarah. Everyone looked forward to the unique, hand made piñatas, the grab bag surprises, swimming in the pool and running around the pear tree three times. He is also remembered for keeping a cigar dry while floating in the waves at Hampton Beach with his hat on.
He taught every grandchild and most of his great grandchild how to play cards.
He always ordered the hottest cup of decaf coffee in the building, after asking the waitress if the kitchen was open. He always enjoyed playing and singing with the kids. His sense of humor is legendary! Mary had a little lamb…(R rated). His “new” clothes were older than most of the grandchildren. The clothes were rotated out with a “Rain in Spain” celebration. His love of Hershey’s chocolate and cigars continued throughout his life.
He weathered many of life’s challenges with strength and humor. He was an incredible man that saw the world through a lens that we will always try to achieve. He is admired for his humor, wit, courage and kindness. Father will be greatly missed.
William was the beloved husband of the late Sarah L. (Marsden) Taylor. He was the loving father of Bernice Blasi and her husband Paul of Winthrop, Judith Johnson and her husband Tom of Florida, Jacalyn Ponsart and her husband Michael of NH, William Taylor of Stoneham and the late Janice Page Dunn and the late James Taylor. He was predeceased by five siblings. He was the cherished grandfather of 17, great grandfather of 32 and great, great grandfather of 13. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Visitation was held at the Gately Funeral Home, 79 W. Foster St., Melrose, on Wednesday, June 17, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. The funeral was from the Gately Funeral Home on Thursday at 9:45 a.m. followed by a Mass of Christian Burial in the Church of the Incarnation, 429 Upham St., Melrose, at 11 a.m.
Interment with Military Honors in Wyoming Cemetery, Melrose.
To sign guestbook, visit www.gatelyfh.com