Welcome to the James C. Taylor Memorial Web Site



James C. Taylor

James Carol Taylor, Jr., was born January 22, 1934, in Sentinel, Oklahoma to James Carol and Grace Mae Taylor. He died peacefully at his home in Epworth Villa with family around on June 20, 2011. Jim grew up on a farm west of Sentinel, Oklahoma, and attended Port Consolidated School. He then attended Oklahoma City University where he met and married Helen Grubb in 1954, graduating from there in 1956. Graduate education included seminary at Garrett in Evanston, Illinois, one semester at Goettingen University in Germany, then Master’s and PhD degrees from Yale University.

As an ordained pastor in the United Methodist Church, he served Selecman in Del City, Crown Heights in Oklahoma City, Jefferson First and Renfrow First in northern Oklahoma, then Sheridan Avenue in Tulsa. He taught in the Religion Department at Oklahoma City University for fourteen years, then later, Old Testament at Phillips Graduate Seminary in Enid for eight. At OCU his offerings included Bible, World Religions, Greek, Hebrew, and Religion in the Arts. His theological and artistic talents produced three books, A Porcine History of Philosophy and Religion and A New Porcine History of Philosophy and Religion (pig cartoons, the latter of which was translated into German), and The Andrew Project, exploring creation.

Other talents included wood carving, calligraphy, graphic art, poetry writing, cooking omelets on a camp stove for Religion Department breakfasts in the park, baking sourdough French bread, and holding a patent on an automatic tractor driver. Folks remember his brilliance, humor, integrity, scholarly rigor, and deep care for all persons, especially anyone suffering. He drew pigs for all occasions: for T-shirts, in letters, on scraps of paper, “certificates” and in hospital rooms. He wrote letters to many friends, and regularly to all of the grandchildren, whose letters were illustrated with their special animal. Family, friends, and students were very important to him. He touched many lives deeply.

Jim had had multiple myeloma for three years, occasional bouts of Alzheimer’s for the last year, grew weaker the last couple months of his life, and died quickly and peacefully from a perforated ulcer.

He was preceded in death by his mother and father, Jim and Grace Taylor, sister Janet Flippin, and daughter Mary Anastasia Taylor. Survivors include his wife, Helen, and two children, daughter Janet Yeracaris and her husband Anthony from Newton, Massachusetts, and son Peter Mercer-Taylor and his wife Beth from St. Paul, Minnesota. There are five grandchildren, Taylor and Veronica Yeracaris, and Andrew, Katie and David Mercer-Taylor.

Burial was held at Port Cemetery near Sentinel on June 21, 2011. Memorial Services will be at First United Methodist Church in Sentinel, Oklahoma, on Friday, July 29, 2011, at 2:00 p.m. and at the Oklahoma City University Chapel on Saturday, July 30, 2011, at 2:00 p.m. Memorials may be sent to Leland Clegg United Methodist Church, 102 E. Hefner Road, Oklahoma City, OK, 73114. Helen’s address is 14901 N. Pennsylvania Avenue, Apt. 322, Oklahoma City, OK, 73134.

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