(December 13, 1936 - June 29, 2012)
Gene "Clabber" Taylor, passed away June 29, 2012 at Crosbyton, Texas. Memorial services will be held at the Espuela Cemetery on FM 1836 between Dickens and Spur, Texas at 7:00 p.m. on July 7, 2012.
©Obituary courtesy of Zapata Funeral Home
Memorial services for "Clabber" Gene T. Taylor were held Saturday, July 7, 2012 at the Espuela Cemetery in the Dry Lake Community with Mr. Eric Swenson officiating. "Clabber" Gene T. Taylor was born December 13, 1936 in Spur, Texas to Harry Taylor and DelReo "A" Tyler Taylor. Clabber attended school in Spur and graduated with the class of 1956. On August 29, 1959, he married Sandra Jo Faulkner and they were married for almost 53 years at the time of his death.
Being brought up by folks who lived through the Great Depression, he was a Jack-Of-All-Trades and a great Southern Engineer. He knew how to "get by" with what he had, whether it was in the house, at the barn or in his shop. His passion was going to farm sales or auctions to see what kind of bargain he could bring home, just like his own dad. He loved to hunt, loved shooting sports and taught his kids to only take from nature or kill what was needed to get by. In the early years of their marriage, he often hunted to feed his family. He and his wife built their home themselves along with the help of many friends. He was always proud of that accomplishment. Through the years, Clabber made friends from all walks of life. He didn't care where you came from or what you had, it only mattered what you were doing with your life right now. When his kids were growing up, many times the kitchen table had six or eight extra settings and the stew pot might have only had red beans or a cottontail rabbit, but they made do. Several times in the summer, they opened their farm home to troubled youth in need of guidance or in need of discipline and work ethic. He was a friend to many and was always willing to teach others and share what he had. His proudest legacy was his grandchildren. He was passionate about teaching them how to run a small farm, take care of the animals, care for the family and how to be a good steward. He wanted his children and his grandchildren to be independent, hardworking and self-sufficient. When Clabber and Sandra first moved to Dickens in the early '60's, he was a member of the first Dickens Volunteer Fire Department. He was Chief for many years and was an ardent fundraiser for the department. He loved to cook outdoors so most of the fundraisers included barbeque, sometimes cooking for two days straight to help make money for the department. He always readily donated his time to the department.
He worked for many years as a trapper for the Fish and Wildlife Department. He traveled over several counties trapping varmints causing harm to farmers and ranchers. He also hunted out of helicopters several times a year and at one time, held the state record on the number of kills in one day. He had a keen eye and a steady hand with a rifle. One of his greatest sorrows was when his sight started deteriorating and he couldn't see well enough to hunt anymore. In the spring of the year, he and several others would go rattlesnake hunting. For all of his life, no matter where he was, he could spot a snake or "smell" one when no one else could. Snake hunting was one of his passions and he spent many hours learning all he could and sharing that knowledge. For years, one of his catches lived in the Abilene Zoo.
Clabber and Sandra managed the Duck Creek Hunting Club for quite some time, also. He loved this job, got to hunt and fish in his leisure time and made many friends and acquaintances through the club. Back then, he spent a lot of his spare time dragging a boat around with someone's kid attached to a rope in the water and loving it. He was just a big ol' kid himself. He was an active member of the original Dickens Lions Club and was an energetic force in getting the club started. He helped build the Dickens Arena and cooked for many of the club fundraisers. He and Sandra owned several businesses over the years. They owned Taylor's Horns and Feathers for a long time until his declining health forced them to sell the restaurant. As partners, they catered far and wide sometimes using very primitive methods to get the job done. He got lots of joy cooking for folks and watching them enjoy his cooking. He would eagerly share his knowledge with anyone willing to learn.
He came from a family of fishermen and that was one of his passions, too. He fished in many places over Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Louisiana and shared that enthusiasm with his family and most especially his grandsons. He always made sure everyone in the family had a good pole and plenty of tackle. For him it was a joy to take any kid to his tank and teach them to fish, how to clean and cook their catch.
He had a special relationship with his youngest daughter, Rebel. When she was younger, he taught her to shoot and clean a gun, and how to cook and clean the kill. He made sure she could work on a tractor, a bailer, a row-binder and taught her to weld. He made sure she had all the necessary animal husbandry skills she needed to help him with the farm animals. One of his proudest moments was when Rebel bought her first motorcycle to run around on the farm. When his health started failing these last couple of years, she drove for him and helped him feed his cattle so he could stay active with the farm.
When his first grandson, Taylor, was born, Clabber saw the strong willed young boy needed a strong male figure and a firm hand. He stepped in and became a loving mentor and role model. He was terribly proud of Taylor and they remained close until his death. Clabber lived a full and remarkable life. He was a card shark and a demon domino player. He was rich in friends and had a wealth of knowledge about so many things. His declining health was a real sore spot for him. He knew he was slowing down and tried to prepare his family for life without him. He was loved by many and will be missed.
He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Sandra Jo Faulkner Taylor, his oldest daughter, Mitzi Taylor of Dickens, his youngest daughter, Rebel Taylor of Dickens, grandson Taylor Thompson of San Angelo, Texas, granddaughter Shiloh Bradley Morcom of Lubbock, Texas and grandson Laythen Adams of Dickens, Texas, and 2 great-grandchildren.Submitted by Mitzi Taylor
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