Don E. Taylor, of Steamboat Springs, died unexpectedly on Sept. 15, 2008. He was 54.
Don was born Nov. 7, 1953, in Pasadena, Los Angeles County, Calif., to George and Evelyn Taylor. He attended London Grade School and Temple City High School in Temple City, Calif. Later, Don moved to Temecula, Calif., and served on many volunteer committees throughout his time there, including the Annual Tractor Race and Wine Balloon Festival. With his bushy beard, sparkling blue eyes and rosy cheeks, he was the designated "Santa Claus" for the annual Temecula Christmas Benefit for many years.
In 1985, Don married Paula Doran, moving to Sheridan, Ore., where he worked as a long-haul truck driver. Don loved working and driving trucks and was happy to view the countryside through the windshield of his large commercial trucks. Single again in 2005, Don moved to Steamboat Springs after visiting his sister, Georgia Taylor. He loved the beautiful mountain-area town and the sense of community Steamboat offered its residents. He decided to stay and make his home in Steamboat, working as a trucker with a CDL license. He worked for Native Excavating, the City of Steamboat, Connell Resources and various other businesses, and he always was willing to go the extra mile for them. He was a fan of NASCAR races, and one often could find Don at a local pub cheering on his favorite driver, Jeff Gordon.
Don is survived by his ex-wife, Paula; stepchildren Sarah, Jamie and Mike; many step-grandchildren; father George R. Taylor; step-mother Elaine Taylor; sisters Jeanne Torres, Georgia Taylor and Patty Finfrock; brothers Robert Taylor and John D. Taylor; step-father Bill Harker; step-sister Harriet Burger; step-brothers Jim and Rich Harker; and many nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends. In addition to his mother, Evelyn Harker, Don was preceded in death by one brother, James Taylor; one sister, Sandra Taylor; and his nephew, Eric Neste.
Memorial services will be held at 10 a.m. Oct. 4, 2008, at Yampa Valley Funeral Home, 2095 Curve Court, Steamboat Springs, CO 80477. Pastor Chuck Girton will officiate. Relatives and friends are welcome to attend the memorial. Flowers will be accepted at the Funeral Home on Oct. 3 and in the early morning on the 4th. A memorial fund has not been established.
The family would like to thank everyone at the Yampa Valley Funeral Home and Don's many friends for their help and support.