Deacon Samuel Taylor, 59, dies; funeral Mass is offered at St. Mary, Canton

Deacon Samuel Taylor

CANTON — A funeral Mass was offered on Saturday, Feb. 15, at St. Mary Church here for Deacon Samuel Taylor, who served the parish as a permanent deacon since his ordination in 2012.

Deacon Taylor died at his Canton residence on Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020. He was 59.

Born Aug. 25, 1960 in Dixon to Guy and Mary (Lercher) Taylor, he married Kathleen Blough on June 13, 1987 in Jacksonville.

He was a graduate of Illinois College in Jacksonville, where he earned a degree in business and communications and was a member of the Pi Pi Rho Literary Society. He retired from the Department of Corrections in 2012 after 25 years and devoted the rest of his life to serving the Lord.

On May 19, 2012 — after five years of preparation — he was among 29 men in the Diocese of Peoria’s ninth class of permanent deacons to be ordained by Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria. He was assigned to his home parish of St. Mary, Canton, as well as St. Michael in St. David. While enduring his own health concerns, he continued ministries including visiting the sick and assisting in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. He was also involved in the parish’s food pantry outreach and was a member of the Knights of Columbus.

Deacon Taylor is survived by his wife, Kathleen; three children, Sam (Jessica Patton) Taylor Jr. of Canton, Luke (Taylor Shepard) Taylor of Los Angeles, California, and Allison Taylor of Peoria; two brothers, Virgil Taylor of Eldena and Russell (Katherine) Taylor of Jacksonville; one sister, Sharon (Richard) Hemmen of Dixon; and two grandchildren, Tatum and Nya.

Burial will be at St Joseph Cemetery in Canton.

Memorials may be made to Kyle Rudolph’s End Zone Charity through the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital.

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