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Charles E. 'Chuck' Taylor, age 93, passed away at his home in Gainesville, surrounded by family on Monday, December 18, 2017. He was born on March 24, 1924 in West Lafayette, Indiana to Alvin Lee and Ruby Hamilton Taylor.
Chuck Taylor was very close to his older brother Bill. At a young age they took music lessons together, Chuck on trombone, Bill on trumpet. They were in the same grade at school, even though they were 15 months apart. Because they were always together, and their father owned a monument business, they were called the 'Tombstone Twins'. They graduated from Monticello High School in 1941, and then planned to study music at Indiana University. At the last minute they got a job offer from an excellent dance band in Lafayette, so they enrolled at Purdue. At Purdue Chuck had a choice between agriculture and engineering. This was the beginning of a five-decade career in engineering.
There were, however, a few interruptions in his education. It took WWII to split the brothers up with Bill serving in the Army Airborne in Europe, and Chuck serving in the Army in the Philippines. Later, during the Korean War, Chuck worked for the navy as a civilian engineer at the David Taylor Model Basin (nuclear submarines) near Washington DC. In 1954 Chuck returned to academic life, completed his PhD, and became an Engineering Professor. He taught 30 years at the University of Illinois, and 10 years at The University of Florida.
On August 28, 1946 Chuck married Lucile 'Nikki' Nitsche. Together they had two sons, four grand children, three great grand children, two chihuahuas and one black Cocker Spaniel. Chuck loved his family, and he also loved his graduate students as if they were family. Their many successes were a source of enormous pride to him.
Finally in 2006, to honor his forty-nine year career, Chuck received a second, honorary Phd. from his alma mater Purdue University. He was addressed thereafter as Doctor-Doctor Taylor.
He is preceded in death by Nikki his loving wife of 56 years, his brother Bill Taylor, and his sister-in-law Babe Taylor. He is survived by his two sons Gary and Glenn; daughter-in-laws Amy Taylor and Donna Taylor; sister-in-law Arlys Gale; favorite brother-in-law Jack Gale; granddaughter Lauren Taylor; grandson Michael Taylor; Nieces Susan Rankert, Laurel Mendivil, and Allison Marioni; Nephews John Taylor and Greg Gale; step grandchildren Lisa Richards and Tom Swain, and three step great grandchildren.
He loved music and played his trombone well into his 80s. He was an avid fisherman. From the Puget Sound to the Gulf of Mexico, from the streams of Colorado to the icy waters of Alaska fish trembled at the mention of his name. He will always be remembered for the twinkle in his eye, and his appreciation of joy, fun, and a great joke, especially if he was telling it! He will be missed by all who loved him.
His burial will take place on December 29, 2017 at Prairie Creek Conservation Cemetery, 7204 SE County Road 234, Gainesville, FL 32641. Please gather at the Lodge by 10:30 am.
A memorial service will be held on February 14, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. in the Oak Room at Oak Hammock 5100 SW 25th Blvd, Gainesville, FL 32608.
Arrangements are in the care of Milam Funeral Home, 311 S. Main St. Gainesville, FL 32601 352-376-5361.

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Published in Gainesville Sun from Dec. 22 to Dec. 24, 2017.
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Memories & Condolences
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9 entries
June 15, 2018
I was most fortunate to be a grad student of Chuck's in the mid 1970's, and to continue to enjoy many years of his friendship and mentoring. He and Niki were very special people who treated us as family and will always be remembered for their kindness and generosity. I will continue to think of Chuck and Nikki and be grateful for having had the opportunity to know them.
John Turner
December 28, 2017
Chuck was a wonderful mentor, friend, and role model. His was a life well-lived. Sincere condolences to the entire Taylor family.
Mark and Lisa TUttle
December 28, 2017
Chuck introduced me to the new world of US, SEM and the philosophy of life. As a term in the Taylor series, I will immensely miss and forever treasure his wisdom and humor.
Bill Chao
December 26, 2017
On behalf of my wife Ann and my daughters Michelle and Elizabeth, I want to extend my sincere condolences to all of the Taylor family. For me, Chuck Taylor was my advisor, my mentor and my friend. He will always be an integral part of my life; his positive impact, friendship and kindness to myself and my family over 40 years has served as a role model that continues to guide me daily. I will be forever grateful and thankful for having the opportunity to be a small part of Nikki and Chuck's life.
Michael Sutton
December 23, 2017
Chuck - - My family and I are forever grateful that you took that risk on me as a graduate student. THANK YOU.
Bob Rowlands
December 22, 2017
Chuck's obituary tells us he loved his graduate students like family. He surely did! And his graduate students loved him. As my advisor at the U of I, and dear colleague ever since, I am immensely grateful for his guidance and friendship. Chuck was my hero, always!
Daniel (Dan) Post
December 22, 2017
Chuck welcomed me into SESA in 1967 and became a great friend and supporter over the years. One of the finest persons I have ever met, both professionally and personally.
William (Bill) Sharpe
December 22, 2017
Sorry for the loss of your love one, may you find comfort in knowing that those who have passed on in death God keeps in his memory because they are precious in his eyes. Psalms 116:15.
~Words of comfort~
December 22, 2017
Such a dear man! We will miss his kind spirit. His obituary is much appreciated and we chuckled to learn of the Tombstone Twins! We regret we cannot be at Prairie Creek on December 29th with you to bid him farewell but will visit both of your parents there
Jeanne Diaz
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