Merrell “Mel” Alexander Taylor Jr. U.S. Veteran

December 14, 1921 - May 24, 2013

Merrell "Mel" Alexander Taylor Jr., age 91 years, of Jefferson City, Mo., passed away Friday, May 24, 2013 at Oak Tree Villas. Merrell was born December 14, 1921, in Troy, Mo., the son of Merrell A. Sr. and Mary Meriwether Taylor. Merrell's early life was on the family farm in rural Missouri. The family later moved into Troy where in high school, Merrell loved sports, in particular, basketball and baseball. He went to Culver-Stockton College where he played basketball and baseball while earning a biology degree. His college was postponed by World War II while Merrell served his country fighting in Europe from 1943 until 1946. He was honorably discharged as a Corporal with a bronze star from the United States Army 20th Armored Division. After returning to college, he met Elinor "Elly" Sears Maxwell. They married on August 26, 1946 in Canton, Mo. and had three children: Ann, John and Alan. He was employed as a medical sales representative, coach and biology teacher prior to receiving his Masters in Education from Northeast Missouri State University in Kirksville, Mo. Merrell spent the majority of his career as the Superintendent of the Morgan County R-1 School District in Stover, Mo. He was Superintendent for over 20 years and said he liked being the "big duck in a little pond." A resident of the Jefferson City area since 1981, he was a member of the First United Methodist Church. Merrell had a passion for camping with his family, hunting and fishing with his sons, watching basketball and baseball, listening to Dixieland Jazz and reading about the old-time mountain men. Sadness in his life came with the early loss of his daughter Ann at age 19 (married to Paul Hayes) and the loss of his wife Elly at age 59 on December 29, 1985. Happily, Merrell later married Marge Swain and greatly loved her and her children, although Margie also passed too early on July 19, 2009. Survivors include: five children, John Taylor (wife Tina) of Jefferson City, Mo., Alan Taylor (wife Kecia) of Wichita, Kan., Rita Spalding of Hide-a-way, Texas, Steve Swain of Bozeman, Mont., and Bob Swain (wife Margaret) of Muscat, Oman; four grandchildren, Jessica Tindall (husband Travis), Nicole Atwood (husband Ryan), Jake Taylor, and Kate Taylor; 10 step-grandchildren; three great-grandchildren, Ryder Atwood, Charlotte Atwood, and Grace Atwood; and six step-great-grandchildren. He was a "Good Man" and the rock of our family. Merrell will be greatly missed. Graveside services and interment with military honors will be conducted at 2:00 p.m., Thursday, May 30, 2013, at the Troy City Cemetery, Troy, Mo. Those desiring may make memorial contributions to the charity of their choice. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Freeman Mortuary.

Condolences are being received online.

Services Location

Freeman Mortuary
  • 915 Madison Street Jefferson City, Mo 65101
  • 573-636-5533
  • Fax 573-636-7513
  • Visit website

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