R. Chapman (Ted) Taylor III passed away peacefully in his sleep on Sunday, September 10th, 2017 at the age of 80. He is survived by his beloved wife of 52 years, Sandra Halverson Taylor (Sandy), and his two daughters, Heather Hove Taylor, of Charlestown, MA and Kristen Taylor Baxter and her husband Robert E. Lee Baxter IV of Newfield’s, NH. In addition he is survived by his three grandchildren, Charles Frederick (Charlie), Benjamin Douglas (Ben), and Julia Wells (Julie) Baxter, several nieces and nephews and their families. He was pre-diseased by his sister Anne Taylor Mount and his parents, Reuben Chapman Taylor Jr. and Anna Carpenter Taylor of St. Louis, Missouri, Southport, Connecticut and John’s Island, Florida.
Ted was born in 1937 in Boston, MA. He was a patriot through and through and noted he was from the “United States of America” as he lived from north to south and east to west attending 13 different schools prior to arriving at Trinity College in Hartford, CT. After graduating with a degree in civil engineering he moved to the San Francisco Bay area and worked for the Fred J. Early Construction Co. His meaningful achievements included the development of a special scaffolding system to build the Titan II missile site in Minot, North Dakota; the construction of the largest sewage treatment plant in the country (at the time), in San Jose, CA and involvement in the development of Marina del Ray. In 1964 he went into business with his father who had recently opened the 20th McDonald’s store in the system and the first on the east coast. While traveling to McDonald’s headquarters in Chicago he re-met and married the love of his life, his sister’s best friend, Sandy. He spent over 38 years as a McDonald’s owner operator with over 25 stores in the Fairfield, New Haven and Hartford area. He designed the first brick McDonalds building, was a leader in developing and later president in the innovative McDonald’s National Operators Advertising Board. He was president of the Connecticut Restaurant Association, a founding member of the Board of Hospice in Branford, trust officer and director of the Union Trust Company. One of his greatest passions was his involvement in and giving back to the communities in which he lived. His work with the Special Olympics was especially meaningful. For over 25 years he provided food for all participants and volunteers. He was instrumental in bringing the International Special Olympic Games to New Haven in 1994. When asked, he notes his greatest achievement was the founding and presidency of the Ronald McDonald House of New Haven, now McDonald’s Children’s Charity of CT.
Since a first visit in 1971, Nantucket held a special place in Ted and Sandy’s hearts. In 1999 they retired fulltime to Nantucket in a home on the harbor designed by their architect daughter, Heather. He actively participated in many organizations as founder, chairman, treasurer and “soldier” for the Pocomo Association, Monomoy Civic Association, the Nantucket Civic Association, Rotary, the Nantucket Cottage Hospital, Nantucket Lightship Basket Museum and his much-loved First Congregational Church in Nantucket.
For all his achievements and contributions what he will be remembered for most is his love of life; the twinkle in his eye, amazingly positive attitude, faith, kind and gentle manner, sense of humor, sweet tooth and fashion sense – especially in pants! He treasured the closeness of community and beauty of his adopted island. Spending time with dear friends and family was his greatest joy.
A memorial service will be held on Sunday, September 17th at the First Congregational Church in Nantucket, 62 Centre Street at 2 PM. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: The Ronald McDonald House of CT, 860 Howard Avenue, New Haven, CT 06519; the Nantucket Cottage Hospital, 57 Prospect Street, Nantucket MA 02554; or the First Congregational Church at P.O. Box 866, Nantucket, MA 02554.
For online condolences and directions please visit www.johnlawrencefuneralhome.com