Taylor Anderson
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ANDERSON, Taylor, 24, died as a result of the tsunami in Japan. She was living her dream as a Japanese Exchange Teaching (JET) Program Teacher and packed a lot of living into her 24 years. She was devoted to her family, friends and students. Taylor attended Millwood School, St. Catherine's (2004) and Randolph-Macon College (2008). She had a passion for Japan since she first had Japanese classes at Millwood School (K-8). She continued her studies of Japan through high school and was involved in the Asian Studies and Political Science programs in college. She was a member of the Alpha Gamma Delta sorority at Randolph-Macon College, where she formed lasting relationships with her fellow sisters. During her summers,Taylor spread the joys of Japanese language and culture to high school students at the VCU Japanese Language Academy, where she realized her love for teaching. Upon graduation from Randolph-Macon, she applied to the JET program. Taylor was stationed in Ishinomaki, Japan, in August 2008. For two-and-a-half years, she biked through wind, rain and snow to teach American culture and language to children ranging from kindergarten to ninth grade. Taylor was fully committed to her students, creating lesson plans that captured their attention, fostered creativity and most importantly, developed their minds by expanding their views of the world. But Taylor wasn't done when she rode home. In her spare time, she taught conversational English to a group of adults who called themselves the Kiwi Club, with whom she also enjoyed singing karaoke. After two-and-a-half years, she had grown to be an irreplaceable part of the community and was planning to return home in August. Taylor was not just enthusiastic about Japan but the world, having traveled to South Korea, Taiwan, Hawaii and Italy. Her weekends were full of friends, hiking, snowboarding and sight-seeing. Taylor was always busy with her projects, whether she was making jewelry, origami or a presentation for her students. Above all, she had a lifelong passion for reading. Taylor made amazing friends in Japan but still managed to keep up the great relationships she had made while in Virginia. Most importantly, she continued to talk to her boyfriend, James Kenney, and their relationship grew from afar. James visited her twice in Japan, sharing in her passion for the country. He planned on proposing to her upon her return to Richmond in August. As she did for her many students, whether they were Japanese or American, Taylor instilled a love for foreign culture in the hearts of her family. Her exuberance for the world she lived in overflowed. Taylor's smile, humor and intelligence infected those around her, inspiring learning and curiosity, but mostly, unrecoverable experiences and friendships. From the city on the James River to the fishing town of Ishinomaki, the ephemeral life of a true ambassador filled the hearts of many and has left them gaping. The vigils of restless mourners in the place she grew up and in the land halfway around the world she so loved silently soothe Taylor's spirit, a spirit now known and shared by distant lands, a testament to her life. Taylor is survived by her mother, Jeanne; father, Andy; sister, Julz; brother, Jeff; and grandparents, Lora B. Anderson and Leroy L. Anderson Jr. A service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 2, at St. Edward Church at 10701 W. Huguenot Rd., Richmond, Va. 23235. The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to Taylor Anderson Memorial Fund for the purpose of rebuilding schools in the region where Taylor taught. Donations may be made at www.st.catherines.org/ tayloranderson. Checks should be made payable to St. Catherine's School Foundation. The school asks that donors write "Taylor Anderson Memorial Gift" in the memo line and mail donations to Taylor Anderson Memorial Gift, c/o St. Catherine's Foundation, 6001 Grove Ave., Richmond, Va. 23226.

This obituary was originally published in the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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Published in Richmond Times-Dispatch on Mar. 30, 2011.
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31 entries
April 26, 2011
Taylor's example of pure love for her charges to see them safe is an inspiration for us.
Walt Hollander
April 25, 2011
I am also a JET with a pasion and love for Japan. Your family is always in my thoughts and prayers.
April 7, 2011
I used to cut Taylor's hair when she was a little girl.I haven't seen Taylor's sweet face in years but I see that she grew into a marvelous young woman. Her life may have been short but it was well lived. God Bless. My prayers are with you.
Tammy Farren
April 4, 2011
Walt Hollander
April 3, 2011
The Meadowbrook years spent with the Anderson family seem so long ago in many ways. Taylor has that same awesome smile that radiates love and kindness. Her life is a lesson for the world in what it means to follow your "calling". It is a lesson of self abandonment and giving to others. Prayers for the family. Praise to God who gave the world this remarkable young lady.

James Reid MBK 78
James Reid
April 3, 2011
I feel like I have a special connection to your family even though we've never met. I teach in southern Japan and am also from Richmond. I will return to Richmond in August after a 2 year contract here which I have loved. I just want to give you all a big hug and share our love of Japan! My heart breaks for you. My husband and I send our prayers from Japan and hopefully one day we can meet.
Sarah Hendricks
April 2, 2011
To the family of Taylor, we would like to give u our deepest sympathy, and we hope the paintings,of taylor will offer some comfort, to be absent from the body, means that she is in the Presense of the Lord. God Bless you
Kevin & Rodina Richardson
April 1, 2011
Our hearts, thoughts and prayers are with you. May God bless your family with comfort during this difficult time.
James & Sheila Simms
March 31, 2011
I heard about the loss of your daugher on TV and wish to express my sympathy. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
May Taylor rest in peace. God Bless your family during this difficult time.
March 31, 2011
My name is Betty Gladden, Marc Williams, is my nephew and husband to Wendy the aunt of Taylors. I am so sorry to hear about this terrible tradegy. All the family has my deepest sympathy. Blessings and prayers be with all of you.
Betty Gladden
March 31, 2011
I know Taylor's boyfriend well and feel for him and Taylor's family. This is such sad news. I wish them all comfort and warmth.
Randy Franklin
March 31, 2011
When Tim and I sat with you Andy, and your mom Lora just a few short days before the earthquake we took joy in the pleasure you expressed when talking of Taylor and her time in Japan. You truly excuded a love and a parental pride that was heartwarming and brought a smile to our faces just to hear you mention her name. We know we you will ache for a long time in the absence of her smile on earth. We pray the memory will live on forever in your hearts and you are strengthened in God's love every day. God Bless you all
Kim and Tim
Tim and Kim Nitz
March 31, 2011
My thoughts and condolences to Taylor's family and friends. May your tears of loss and sorrow soon be eclipsed by smiles from memories and shared times.
March 30, 2011
I did not know Taylor but was made aware of her disappearance by a friend of her aunt, Rexanne Metzger - they were in college at VCU years ago. Many of us in Norfolk, Va prayed for Taylor and now we pray for peace and understanding for her family Prayers!!! Sheila Jamison-Schwartz
March 30, 2011
I didn't know the family or Taylor, just from watching the news. My heart goes out to her family, she was a vibrant young lady> May she be with God forever.
March 30, 2011
So sad, so sorry,
Sandra Hagen
March 30, 2011
Andy, Jean, Julz & Jeffrey - Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this sad occasion. Taylor will be missed. She was very special, and, will always have a place in our hearts. God bless your family and give you strength and peace.
Eric & Bonnie Friedman
March 30, 2011
My family didn't know Taylor, but we were made aware of her story through a mutual friend. As a mother of children who are encouraged to go out and embrace the world, I know how important this time in japan was to her. My heart goes out to Taylor's family and friends. I hope that knowing she was where she truly wanted to be brings you comfort in the coming days.
March 30, 2011
My thoughts and prayers are with your family at this most difficult time.

March 30, 2011
Jean, Andy, Julie and Jeffrey, My thoughts and prayers will be with you now and always. God bless and keep you through this most difficult time. Love, Ms. Robin
Robin Rinehart
March 30, 2011
Taylor touched and enriched many lives. May the Memorial Fund continue to do that and bring comfort to you and to those in Japan.
March 30, 2011

May the peace of God be with your family now and in the days to come. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
March 30, 2011
Andy and Jeanne and Julz and Jeff,
Our hearts go out to you in this saddest of times. You are constantly in our thoughts and prayers. Taylor was an extraordinary young woman, and her legacy will live on in all the good that she did, here and in Japan.
Sharon and John, Midlothian, VA
March 30, 2011
My deepest condolences on your loss. Taylor did more living in her 24 years than most people do in three times that amount of time. She touched many lives and made a difference for others. She will not be forgotten. May your memories give you comfort in these sad days, and may the void in your hearts be filled with the knowledge that you raised a beautiful human being whose life mattered.
Carol Carter
March 30, 2011
When tragedy strikes and takes the life of our loved ones, many cry out with great sorrow. Your tears are not unnoticed by Our Heavenly Father. Please know that Our Heavenly Father loves you and will sustain you during these most difficult times. Just call on His name.
March 30, 2011
I did not know your Daughter but she is the kind of inspiration we all seek each day. I am so sorry for your loss but the good and kindess she brought into this world is timeless.
March 30, 2011
We are so sorry. Your daughter was a loving and giving person.

The Murry Family
JM Murry
March 30, 2011
Andy, Jeanne, Julz & Jeffrey - our hearts and deepest sympathy goes out to all of you!!! We have been thinking of you so much!!
Suzie & Rick Adams
March 30, 2011
Roy, Lora, Andy and Jean
My heart goes out to you and my prayers are with you. I only met Taylor when she was an infant, but I can tell from all I have heard that she was an amazing woman and did great things with the short time she had here on earth. I have been praying for you since the moment I heard and I have continued to pray that you will find the strength you need to get through this.
Janice Wilson
March 30, 2011
your family is in our thoughts...
Terry M
March 30, 2011
God Bless Taylor for the good she has done in Japan. She is at peace with the Lord now.
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