In Loving Memory We Celebrate the Life of
Robert A. Taylor
1941 - 2022
"If there's a heaven for me, I'm sure it has a beach attached."
Robert Augustus Taylor, US Army (Retired) and resident of Palm Coast, FL, died unexpectedly on Sunday, May 1, 2022, at the age of 80 while visiting his fiancée in Cebu City, Philippines.
Robert “Bobby” Taylor was born in Newport News, VA on September 8, 1941. When just a few weeks old, Robert’s father John R. Hundley delivered Robert to Rufus and Alberta Hundley, John’s parents, in a milk crate, which Robert always recognized as the greatest gift of his life. Robert adored his Grandma Alberta who raised him with unfailing love and devotion, and began teaching him at a very young age. Robert was a cute little fellow who could read, write, add, subtract and count by age 4, which helped him earn money carrying things for local businessmen. Robert first learned to cook by helping Grandma Alberta who had a large garden and sold dinners in the neighborhood.
In twelfth grade, a teacher changed Robert’s life by arranging for him to take a special test, which led to Robert being awarded a full-tuition scholarship to Hampton Institute.
After the death of his beloved Grandma Alberta, Robert lived with his dear brother John Hundley, and sister-in-law Valada. After a year at Hampton Institute and struggling with the cost of school, Robert joined the Air Force and completed the rigorous Russian language program before marrying Julia Marie Soemarni whom he had met at the Hampton Institute. Robert and Julia were blessed with daughters Donna Elizabeth and Anna Maria Taylor.
Following 9 years active duty in the Air Force, Robert moved to Washington, D.C. and lived with his beloved Aunt Ida while he graduated from Howard University in 1973 with a degree in Russian Studies. Following graduation, Robert began a long and successful career as a Position Classification Specialist in the Federal Government.
In 1975, Robert married Caryl Josephine Butcher whom he met at Howard University and reenlisted in the Army Reserves’ 5th Psychological Operations Unit where he used his Russian language skills. Robert and Caryl were blessed with daughters Robyn Kachelle and Crystal Caryl Taylor. Upon retiring from the Office of Personnel Management and US Army, Robert married Joyce Faucette and the couple moved to Palm Coast, FL, before divorcing some years later.
Throughout his life, Robert was a devoted father and grandfather, and a prolific reader. Robert was primary reviewer and helper for the children’s homework and frequent trips to the library. When living in the Philippines, Robert enjoyed cooking breakfast for his fiancée Jennifer and daughter Mary Jean whom he lovingly called “Chen Chen” before taking her to school every day.
Robert was also an avid card player. He was especially fond of pinochle and poker, and easily remembered every card and play. Robert used the card game blackjack to teach the children math. He also enjoyed cooking, tennis (up to age 70), swimming and traveling around the world. Robert enjoyed visiting and speaking with friends in different languages. He was often the life of the party, especially on the dance floor! Robert was known for his ability to travel on a budget and find cost-effective ways to enjoy seeing the world. Robert was also a wonderful storyteller, recalling and sharing stories from the many fascinating books he read.
Robert will be deeply missed by his family, friends and all who knew him.
Robert is survived by his children, Donna Taylor, Robyn Taylor and Crystal Taylor; his grandchildren Nicholas Taylor, Lauryn Taylor-Piazza, Taylor Torres and Greyson Torres; and his fiancée Jennifer M. Sta. Ana and daughter Mary Jean S. “Chen Chen” Helacio; and Robert’s half-sisters and brother, nieces, nephews and cousins. Robert is predeceased by his beloved Grandma Alberta Hundley, his daughter Anna Maria Taylor, his father John R. Hundley, and brother John Hundley, and biological mother Helen M. Taylor.
Leave your memories, condolences, or well-wishes.