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James Taylor

Posted 11/03/10 (Wed)

James L. Taylor died Oct. 28, 2010, at the Good Shepherd Home in Watford City. Mass of the Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2010, at Epiphany Catholic Church, Watford City, with the Rev. John Pfeifer officiating. Interment with military honors will take place at Schafer Cemetery, Watford City, N.D.
James L. Taylor was born on Oct. 24, 1918, in Alexander, N.D., to Lester S. and Elizabeth A. (Dwyer) Taylor. He grew up on the family farm in Charbon Township northwest of Alexander, completing his elementary education in Charbonneau and graduating from Alexander High School. He enrolled at Minot State Teachers College, where he earned a Standard Teaching Certificate. In 1939, he was one of ten students to enroll in the first Civilian Pilot Training Program sponsored by the college, and he earned his private pilot license.
In January 1941, Jim enlisted in the United States Naval Reserve as a Naval Aviation Cadet. He served throughout World War II in many capacities, including flight instruction and managing flight deck operations as a V-1 Division Officer aboard the aircraft carrier USS Bunker Hill in the Pacific theater. In May 1945, the Bunker Hill was hit by two kamikaze pilots, rendering heavy damage to the vessel. He returned with the damaged ship to Bremerton, Wash. After World War II, Jim remained in the Naval Reserve, flying transport aircraft in the United States. He participated in the Berlin Airlift in Germany as a Naval Liaison Officer. He was honorably discharged from the Naval Reserve in 1949 with the rank of Commander.
Jim attended law school at the University of North Dakota, earning his law degree. He established a law office in Watford City, where he practiced until 2001.
He married Patricia Knight in 1954, and helped raise two sons, Tim and Kent.
He was involved in many activities, including the North Dakota Bar Association, Knights of Columbus, and Rotary, of which he was a charter member in the local club.
He also continued to operate the family farm, and was an active pilot throughout his life. He passed on his love of flying to his sons and grandsons, among others. He loved spending time with his family, and looked forward to any chance he could be with his grandchildren.
He is survived by his two sons and their wives, Tim and Teri, and Kent and Kathy, both of Watford City, ND; seven grandchildren, Nick, Luke (Courtney Jellesed), Kelli, Adam, Brandon, Lisa (Brian) Felty and Sarah (Sean) Preston Hesler; two great-grandchildren, Jett Patrick Taylor and Carter Felty; seven nieces and nephews, Bill (Pat) Lindvig, Ron (Rosalie) Lindvig, Georgann (Allen) Reel, Steve (Wanda) Lindvig, Jeanine Lindvig, Elise Lindvig and Bob (Vicki) Lindvig; and several cousins.  He was preceded in death by his parents; and his sister, Katherine (Bethel) Lindvig.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Katherine (Bethel) Lindvig.
Friends may call at the Fulkerson Funeral Home in Watford City on Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. A Rosary service will be held at Epiphany Catholic Church on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m., and also an hour before services at the church on Wednesday morning. Friends may share memories and condolences with the family online at wwwfulkersons.com.