Monday, December 05, 2011


Retired Lamar Professor David G. Taylor hit a homerun when he and his wife moved to Beaumont in 1955.

Dr. Richard W. Setzer, Dean of the Lamar School of Business, hired Taylor as Professor of Marketing.

Upon arriving in Beaumont, David hit another homerun when he and his wife, Etoie, joined the First Baptist Church. They have served long and well continuing to be shining lights of faithful inspiration. Taylor is a Life Deacon and loves to talk about his church ministry. Etoie was supposed to be named Etoile, but her birth certificate was mis-spelled. So Etoie it is although their children called her “Mother.”

Prof. Taylor did not have to wait long after settling down in his new office at Lamar. The phone rang and Taylor found himself with his first consultation appointment. Yet another homerun.

That first meeting in Taylor’s office was with the three Rogers’ brothers, Nate, Ben, and Sol. Their inquiries centered on how to build and market a shopping center. From those early consultations emerged the incredibly successful Gateway Shopping Center. Of course, most of you reading this know the rest of the story.

Prof. Taylor arrived in time for the integration of Lamar State College of Technology. He hit a homerun and has many a story to tell about that historical period in time. His first black student was Alvin G. Randolph, who turned out to be one of Beaumont’s leading realtors. Taylor and Randolph developed a close friendship that lasted until Randolph’s recent death.

Taylor’s teaching career included 15 months at Baylor, 6 years at Arkansas State, and 33 years at Lamar. He retired from Lamar in 1988.

Just after Hurricane Rita, Taylor drove to the Sam Rayburn Lake area to help a friend “clean up the mess.” There were fallen trees and debris all over the cabin grounds. David reached down to pick up a piece of wood and was surprised when a copperhead snake chose to bite his finger. Taylor killed the snake and named it Rita. This amounted more to a foul ball than a homerun but it did instigate a run to the hospital.

Etoie and friends finally got David through all the brush on the road and reached the Jasper Hospital. Everything seemed fine except for the fact that there was no electricity in Jasper, including the hospital.

The doctors told David they were going to airlift him to Tyler. Taylor rode flat on his back in that medical chopper. He told me that Etoie sat up front beside the pilot and conversed with the pilot over the two-way radio. All David could do was stare straight up at the ceiling of that craft. He did note that the chopper was black and yellow. Anyway, he recovered.

Taylor has always enjoyed entering contests. Each win is a homerun and they include: A trip to Mexico City, a fur coat for Etoie, a trip to Paris, a 1964 Pontiac LeMans, and numerous appliances. His most recent win was a Gatorade Cooler with 15 Gatorade towels and 15 bottles of Gatorade.

Taylor is in reasonably good health for a man of 85 years. He explains, “I still mow my own yard for the exercise. I seem, however, to be losing my hair (what hasn’t turned gray has turned loose). But my neighbor’s Jack Russell Terrier (Max) seems to love me so it can’t be all bad.”

A tome of great dimension would be required to hold the life experiences of David G. Taylor. He should write his autobiography. This would result in another home run.

David is a prolific writer. He has been published in magazines and newspapers, including several articles in the Beaumont Enterprise.

David and Etoie just celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary.
That, my friends, is definitely a grand slammer.


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