Longtime La Plata County resident Bobby K. Taylor died Tuesday, April 3, 2012, at Mercy Regional Medical Center in Durango. He was 91.
Mr. Taylor was born March 21, 1921, in Kirtland, N.M., to Elmer Franklin Taylor and Adella Armina Bond. He married Anna V. Taylor in Salt Lake City on Jan. 19, 1944. Mrs. Taylor preceded Mr. Taylor in death in February 1996.
In 1946, after serving in World War II, Mr. Taylor moved just south of Redmesa, where he operated the Long Hollow flour mill and a mostly dryland farm near Redmesa and on the Dryside. The flour mill closed down in 1957, but he continued farming and later turned the farm over to his sons Deems, Duane and Trent Taylor.
On Dec. 19, 1997, he married Norma B. Taylor in Redmesa.
A resident of southwest La Plata County for about 66 years, Mr. Taylor was active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Durango, Cortez and several other towns in the area. Throughout his lifelong service to the church, he held many positions, including full-time missionary and bishop.
He was active in civic and community affairs, serving on several boards and committees. Mr. Taylor served a term as La Plata County commissioner and was instrumental in starting the local Basin Coop when it opened in the early 1950s.
“He also served on many irrigation water boards and spent most of his life here working toward the building of the Animas-La Plata water project, which was approved by Congress in the mid 1960s but was never funded or built as originally envisioned,” his family said.
He went to Washington, D.C., many times to lobby for the project’s construction, and it eventually was built after being scaled down to the current Lake Nighthorse west of Durango.
“Family was of utmost importance to him, and he spent many years collecting genealogy and pictures and family histories, which he now leaves as a legacy and a blessing to his posterity,” his family said. “A Southwest Colorado-area pioneer history book over 560 pages long was compiled and published with a lot of help and encouragement from him,” they said.
Mr. Taylor is survived by his wife of 14 years, Norma B. Taylor, of Hesperus; sons Deems Taylor of Breen and Duane Taylor, Norman Taylor and Trent Taylor, all of Redmesa; daughter Gevene Sherman of Redmesa; stepson Rick Walker of Cornelius, N.C.; 24 grandchildren; and 31 great grandchildren.
A viewing will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 14, 2012, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Redmesa with the funeral at 11 a.m. Burial will follow at Redmesa Cemetery.