Dear lafmom,

Yes it is Mary Clare!

I don't know how to do a PM so this is all I can do. Please, Please call me sometime next week or email.

Bride of JT, Mary Clare
Last edited by ClevelandDad
Mary Clare,
Thank you. A dear poster had given me your address. I appreciate your info and I imagine others will also appreciate your email so they may check on you all. I'll be in touch and you're in my prayers.

Edit: Mary Clare, I'm going to have your post edited and your phone number removed because of safety purposes. I'll leave your email, but it's probably best to not share the phone number with cyber world.
Last edited by lafmom
Here is one of the greatest tributes to fathers, sons, and baseball that I have ever read. People wonder sometimes why baseball is so important around here. It is important because it is about so much more than baseball.

The link is a little slow and sometimes needs refreshed to come up properly. Here is a copy of the article - RIP Jeff!!

By Dave Thompson

Published: April 29, 2009

LU professor, son bonded through baseball

Jeff Taylor Sr. had been throwing batting practice for his son since Jeff Jr. was in youth league in Asheville, N.C. The two practiced together through the younger Taylor’s junior year at Lynchburg College.

Taylor Sr.’s widow, Mary Clare Taylor, recalled on Wednesday the circumstances surrounding her husband’s tragic death this week.

Father and son were having just such a batting practice on Tuesday afternoon at Lynchburg College’s Fox Field, she said, when a line drive hit her husband near his jaw or throat area, and he collapsed on the pitcher’s mound.

Taylor was pronounced dead shortly thereafter at Lynchburg General Hospital.

“I received the phone call at 3:35 at work,” Mary Taylor said.

“After he got hit and Jeffrey ran up there,” she said, “he said he was OK, but then his eyes rolled back. So his son, my son, was actually trying to do CPR.”

Taylor Sr., 44, an assistant professor of health sciences and kinesiology at Liberty University, was in the process of working on his doctorate in education from Liberty, his wife said, and always had been an avid baseball fan.

Taylor Sr.’s feelings about baseball manifested themselves in most aspects of his life, his wife said, down to the family dog’s name — “Slider McGwire VonRyan,” named after a type of pitch, slugger Mark McGwire and Hall of Fame pitcher Nolan Ryan.

“I’m not a die-hard baseball mom, but I do try,” she said.

“I will freeze to death out there watching Jeffrey,” she added, “but I wouldn’t do it if it weren’t for him.”

Her husband and son were practicing so her son wouldn’t get rusty before he started playing summer ball with the Martinsville Mustangs, a summer collegiate baseball team.

“My son, who is a go-getter, didn’t want to get lazy,” she said, “so they were throwing batting practice yesterday.”

Four other Lynchburg College players also had been on the field that day, said LC Vice President John Eccles in an e-mail to faculty, staff and students at the college Wednesday. He did not identify the players.

Eccles said college emergency workers were the first on the scene and administered CPR to Taylor.

Lynchburg emergency crews transported Taylor to Lynchburg General Hospital.

“Lynchburg College sends its deepest condolences to the Taylor family in the wake of this accident,” the e-mail read, adding that counseling is available to the LC community.

Eccles said LC baseball coach Percy Abell knew Taylor Sr. from interaction with him at the college’s baseball games.

“He was at every game,” Eccles said. “Coach Abell said he was at most practices. He was an enthusiastic supporter, just loved baseball.”

Taylor said her husband passed that love on to their son, through his earliest experiences in the game.

“Once he did his first official year of little league when he was 6, he was hooked.”

When the younger Taylor was in fourth grade, in Asheville, his mother said, he used to shag fly balls on occasion with Baltimore Orioles third baseman Ty Wiggington, then playing for the University of North Carolina Asheville, where her husband was the head trainer.

Her son’s fate, she said, was pretty much decided even before he knew what baseball was.

“He had seven baseball outfits within a month of being born.”

Mary Taylor said she remembers a string of major life events intertwined with baseball.

“My 40th birthday was on a baseball field. Our 15th anniversary happened on the baseball field, our kid turned 11,” she said, all within about two weeks of each other.

The couple would have celebrated their 25th anniversary in June.

James Nutter, an associate professor of English at Liberty, heads up the school’s quiz bowl program on which Taylor Sr. participated last year, as a graduate student.

“We had a quiz bowl scrimmage between the varsity team and the faculty,” Nutter said, noting Taylor was one of the first to respond.

“He just loved it so much, and he was so good,” Nutter said. “He had a photographic memory, and just knew every type of sports trivia imaginable.”

Liberty Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr. addressed students at Liberty’s convocation Wednesday, saying Liberty had lost a “great professor.”

“We just need to remember that family in our prayers,” he said.

Falwell said Tuesday night that he received a call from Lynchburg College President Kenneth Garren after the accident, notifying him of Taylor’s death.

Taylor, Falwell said, was leader of the student group known as the LUnatics, and was loved by many students.

By Wednesday evening, dozens of well-wishers had posted comments to the Liberty sports-fan Web site

Liberty students also painted the “Spirit Rock” on campus in memory of Taylor.

“He obviously touched more lives than I was ever aware of,” said Mary Taylor.

Visitation for Jeff Taylor Sr. is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Friday.

Heritage United Methodist Church will hold a service at 10 a.m. Saturday, Mary Taylor said.

Last edited by ClevelandDad
Our deepest condolences and on-going prayers for the Taylor family through this tragic ordeal. May you find comfort and peace in the days and months ahead.
I have no words at this time,....except that I am deeply saddened and still in shock. My heart goes out to JT's entire family. Please feel my arms of sympathy and strength around you.
Last edited by shortstopmom
I read this in the paper this morning and thought it was a rare tragedy.

I didn't even realize it was a HSBBW friend.

I just cannot imagine how his family feels, or how the boy who hit the ball (just doing what he was supposed to do) must feel.

What a terrible year this has been with all these tragic events.
WOW!!!! I can't even begin to imagine what Jeffery is going through. My condolences to you and Jeffery Mrs. Taylor.

So sorry to hear about JT. Life is short. Here today - gone tomorrow. Make every minute count. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.
My prayers and love to Mary Clare and Jeffrey. I hadn't been on this site for a while and am so sorry to read this thread. May God comfort you in the days and months ahead.
God bless all who have lost friends and family.
Last edited by mikamom
I invite everyone to read this link on the DIII baseball blogspot about Jeff and his passion for his family, life, and baseball.
It includes a beautiful picture of Jeff, Mary Clare and Jeff, Jr.

As JT told me in his last email, "a Dad's/coaches work is never done." When you read this link, I think you might agree that JT's work isn't done, it is just being completed from a different place.
Last edited by infielddad
Don't know how I missed this till just now...


The poor kid...

There aren't words...
Mary Clare and Jeff, Jr.
When you happen to check the HSBBW and this thread, please know we have all been thinking of you today.
While we could not be there in person today, we were/are with you.
As I posted before, thank you for sharing Jeff with us and thank you for letting him share his love for you, for life, and for baseball with us.
Here is another link that was started on the Liberty Flames fans message board. It starts with the first terrible news of Jeff's accident and then later on provides some personal accounts of Jeff's funeral and memorial - needless to say, baseball was featured prominently at Jeff's funeral... Both Jeff Jr. and Mary Clare were able to speak at the memorial and by all accounts it was very moving...

Here is but one of the anecdotes from the thread:
I was in line by 6:15 pm, and the wait to get in was at least a full hour. They had a PowerPoint of pictures going, everything from black & whites when Jeff was a little boy, to college pics when Jeff had some 1970s hair, wedding photos where I swear Jeff and I had the same mid-'80s white tux (with matching shoes), to team pics of Jeff coaching his son in Little League, to even a Quiz Bowl pic we took standing with a statue of the Hokie bird at Virginia Tech...

In Jeff's casket were 2 baseball bats--one wooden & one aluminum, a very worn baseball glove, an autographed baseball from somebody's grand slam (I'm guessing his son's), batting gloves, and a pencil drawing of Christ on the cross dated 1973.

The Pittsburgh Pirates apparently found out about this terrible tragedy and sent representatives out of respect... shows how big of heart baseball people have...
Last edited by ClevelandDad
I am just numb. I too have had the pleasure of knowing JT over the past several years. We met on this site as our son's were about to graduate from high school and go off to start their college baseball years.

I met Jeff in person at a showcase/tournament in Petersburg, VA a couple of years back when our son's teams played each other, and again last year at the D-III regionals in Danville.

There was an extended rain delay that night, not quite a year ago. Jeff was always so supportive of all the players no matter who they played for and full of energy and life. He taped the antics of the players while we waited for the game to resume. We talked and laughed and just had a downright good time. He posted the film he made on and since I have shared his footage with many of my players and friends. The game ended in the early morning like around 1 or 2 AM, little did I know that would be the last time I saw Jeff Taylor. We since had emailed one another as he did with many of you on this site.

Truly a tragic event to remind us all of how life is so fragile and short.

Yesterday, my son finished his College baseball career and will graduate this December. As he was recognized by his peers before the game, I had both tears of joy and sadness in my eyes about these two, so different, events that touched our lives.

To Jeffrey and Mary Clare, our prayers are with you for strength and guidance from above.

Last edited by cvsting
Dear Friends,

I wanted to let you know that we have created a new forum, In Memory, so that we can remember beloved friends and family members who have passed, and honor their lives with fond stories.

Our remembrance threads for Nick Adenhart and Brandon Villalobos have been moved to In Memory, and in a day or two you will find this remembrance for our dear friend JT there.

Thank you,


Last edited by MN-Mom
It's been a week since we lost Jeff and it feels odd not to be trading 4-5 e-mails a day with him about baseball, sons, tournament bids, life, or something or other.

With regard to the thread about "cyber-friends", I have no doubt that Jeff Taylor would have jumped in his car and driven 3-4 hours to give the shirt off of his back if any of his friends, hometown or cyberspace, needed it. Beyond 3-4 hours, being the very smart and educated guy that he was, he would've shipped the shirt.

He is greatly missed and I continue to pray for Mary Clare and Jeff, Jr. He was one heck of a good man.

I don't visit here as often as I use to, and I am saddened to hear about JT. I will keep Jeff's family in my thoughts and prayers. God bless JT and his family.
JT, we miss you. The banter with gotwood was a much-needed light in this HSBBW home. I'm sorry I never got to meet you in person.
With father's day approaching, I ask that we all think of Jeff Jr and Mary Clare. I just spoke through emails to Mary Clare and just having Mother's day last month, a milestone birthday herself, as well as what would have been their 25th wedding anniversary this month, the emotions and loss are deeply felt. I'm sure with father's day, that Jeff will be on many minds.

The HSBBW family's thoughts and prayers continue to be with all the Taylors.
I was just thinking about Jeff also, as I came across one of his typically thoughtful and entertaining posts.

Mary Clare and Jeff Jr, we are thinking of you this weekend and this month, missing Jeff along with you, and sending our prayers and thoughts for warm memories and comfort.

Bless you,

I miss JT, lafmom please give his family our best, he is in our hearts.

Does anyone know how JT junior is doing, would sure love to hear how the summer is going for him.
Happy Fathers day Jeff. I miss you. I miss reading your posts and learning from you each and every time. The Lord is watching over your boy. He will be fine. Thank God for people like you. You are the type of person that makes baseball the greatest game on the planet. I know you are still watching your son play. God would have it no other way!
Originally posted by Coach May:
Happy Fathers day Jeff. I miss you. I miss reading your posts and learning from you each and every time. The Lord is watching over your boy. He will be fine. Thank God for people like you. You are the type of person that makes baseball the greatest game on the planet. I know you are still watching your son play. God would have it no other way!

Just ran across this. Thats a beautiful thought Coach May with Truth written all over it. God bless you JT and your wife and son.
Mary Clare and Jeff, Jr. I seldom visit HSBW anymore so it was with great sadness that I just read of Jeff's passing.....there is not much for me to add......all postings speak to what a wonderful man he was. Just want to say that you both will be in my prayers for you have indeed suffered a great loss. God be with you, and give you strength to cope and carry on. I am so very sorry.
I wish to share this information with those that would like to honor Jeff's memory by making a contribution in his name.

Liberty University
Attn: Sharon Hartless
1971 University Blvd.
Lynchburg, VA 24502

Write on the memo line: Jeff Taylor Mem. Scholarship
I shared with lafmom this funny a cute story about Jeff just this morning. Twenty seven years ago on the evening of the All Star game Jeff and I had our first "official" date. Went to a pizza place and he strategically seated me where he could see the TV and watch the All Star too! I had no clue!!!! We have laughed about this for years.

The Scholarship information posted by lafmaom is something that Jeff's boss, Vance has taken under his wing. It is Vance's goal to make this scholarship self funding. At this point in time we are just shy of $4000. There will most likely be a Golf Tournament and if it can be pulled off a exhibition baseball game between Lynchburg College and Liberty University. Now that would be cool. The scholorship is intended for a Senior in the Athletic Training Education Program where Jeff was the Clinical Coordinator.

I was also told that the athletic training lab room is going to be named after Jeff sometime this school year. It appears they may have found someone to fill Jeff's position...I am glad that he was a former football trainer at Lynchburg College. It might be easier for someone who actually knew Jeff than a "stranger"...they might have been a little overwhelmed by following Jeff.

Anyway, Jeffrey and I are doing I say to people who ask, "we haven't crawled under a rock yet". When you can still count your blessings during times like this you know God is watching over you! Jeff and I were married 25 years (June 9th...I celebrated for the both us!). I think Jeff was having more fun planning my surprise 50th birthday party though. He would have pulled it off I am sure.

God Bless all of you,
Mary Clare
Correction: I meant where Jeff was the Clinical Coordinator at Liberty University not LC. It has been confusing for the last three years keeping the two schools straight!!!
Anyway, Jeffrey and I are doing I say to people who ask, "we haven't crawled under a rock yet". When you can still count your blessings during times like this you know God is watching over you! Jeff and I were married 25 years (June 9th...I celebrated for the both us!). I think Jeff was having more fun planning my surprise 50th birthday party though. He would have pulled it off I am sure.

God Bless you and Jeffery Mary Clare! angel
Last edited by ClevelandDad
Mary Clare,
Thank you for letting us know how you and JT jr are doing, I know that you know that we miss him very much.

It is widely believed that God is omniscient, but he now has a guy on his team that may know a bit more about baseball than the Almighty himself.

I can imagine the two of them sitting on their lofty perches with willowy clouds drifting by and excitedly discussing in great detail all of the games being played below.

And your husband has strategically positioned his perch so as to keep his loving eye on you and Jeffrey.

Thank God some things never change.

And thank you for sharing with us Mary Clare.


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