Cover photo for Lt. Col. Douglas Taylor (Retired)'s Obituary
Lt. Col. Douglas Taylor (Retired) Profile Photo
1951 Lt. 2022

Lt. Col. Douglas Taylor (Retired)

October 6, 1951 — May 19, 2022


Douglas Dean Taylor of Harrisburg, NC passed away on Thursday morning, May 19, 2022 in his home surrounded by his wife, Valerie and his sister-in-law Sylvia Wright.

Doug was born in Hamilton, Al. on October 6, 1951, the son of Lois Nichols Taylor and Dorsey Taylor. Doug was the 8th child of Lois and Dorsey Taylor out of 9.

Doug met the love of his life Valerie Jean Fisher in Tampa, Fl. November 27, 1998 and they were married on October 1, 2000 in Charlotte, NC. They celebrated nearly 22 years of marriage together in wedded bliss.

Doug was preceded in death by his parents, sister Audrey Fikes, brothers Max, Hugh, Duane, Edward, and Kerry.

Doug is survived by his loving wife Valerie, along with his brothers Dwight Taylor and wife Mary Ann of Evergreen, Al. and Phillip Taylor and wife Deborah of Hamilton, Al., brother-in-law Keith Fisher and his wife Helga of Hendersonville, NC, Kent Fisher and his wife Cris of Naples, Fl., sister-in-law Sybil Kizer and her husband Dave of Moline, Il., and sister-in-law Sylvia Wright of Moline, Il., and many nieces and nephews.

In 1970 Doug graduated 9th in his class from Hamilton High School and lettered in football all 4 years. Doug attended high school from 1966 – 1970. While in high school, he realized his dream of having a United States Air Force career and joined the ROTC.

Doug was accepted into the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa and attended on a scholarship in the fall of 1970 and graduated from there in 1974. Doug made all that possible there in 1974 with 3 years’ worth of credits with a Civil Engineering Degree. He joined the fraternity Phi Sigma Kappa (Phi-Sig as they called it) and was the Fraternity President for his Junior and Senior years. Doug’s dear college friend, Phil Turkett just shared with me that it was always a very small fraternity that was barely “holding on” in Phil’s and Doug’s Junior and Senior years, 1973/1974. Doug kept them together and Phil later followed in his footsteps as President. It totally survived mainly because of Doug and is now a thriving chapter with well over 100 members.

He also worked part-time in the University cafeteria, as there was no money to pay for his further education all while still fulfilling his obligations in ROTC.

Doug finished Navigation School at the top of his class (he was a naturally born navigator) and finished Navigation School at the top of his class.

Doug became one of the youngest to be made a Navigational Instructor/Evaluator.

Doug joined the USAF in the fall of 1974 as an Officer and swiftly moved up the ranks. When he made Captain, he attended Troy University to pursue his Master’s Degree in Public Administration, which he completed in 1-1/2 years all while still in the USAF in order to achieve the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

He was awarded 7 Air Medals for flying over 140 Operation Missions, and accumulated over 4,000 hours of flying time. He was part of a classified mission which resulted in a minor international incident.

Doug was honorably discharged from the Air Force in 1993 after 20 years of good and faithful service. Shortly thereafter he moved to Tampa, Fl. 1-1/2 years after he and Valerie met, they moved from Tampa, Fl. to Charlotte, NC. in 2000. In 2002 Doug started his second career at the corporate headquarters of Bank of America. He quickly climbed the corporate ladder and left the Bank in 2016 as a Senior Vice President after 14 years of service.

Doug and Valerie enjoyed several years of retirement together simply loving on and enjoying each other’s company. They both had a sense of adventure and loved traveling. They spent many February/March vacations going to the southern Gulf Coast of Florida, Negril and Montego Bay, Jamaica, Hamilton, Bermuda, cruising the Caribbean, and Brevard, The Highlands, Blowing Rock/Boone, NC in the fall, as well as Charleston, SC. in the fall.

Doug and Valerie would like to acknowledge and thank Doug’s Hospice/Critical Care Team, without whom his transition journey would have been unbearable: First and foremost, Valerie and Doug are especially indebted and grateful to her little Sister Sylvia, who dropped everything on March 21, 2022, and set out at 9:45 pm central time to drive 900 miles alone from Moline, Il. to Harrisburg, NC to help support her big sister and help love on and support Doug. She is as cool as a cucumber under duress and a Godsend/Heavenly Angel. Sylvia arrived at the Fisher Taylor home on March 24, 2022 at 7:30 pm eastern time while Hospice was setting up all of Doug’s equipment, very chaotic. She immediately stepped up and was a great comfort to Valerie. Doug was transported from the hospital by hospice (where he’d spent a week battling pneumonia) to our home in the late morning on March 25, 2022. Doug was so very thankful for Sylvia’s presence, knowing Valerie would not be alone once Doug took his last and final journey to Heaven. Hospice Nurse Lynde, Hospice Social Administrator Valerie, Hospice Personal Groomer Tania, and Hospice Chaplin Amanda, without whom Doug would not have been able to survive the time that he did and be capable of staying with his loved ones as long as he was given. They were a great form of true love, comfort and support.

If you feel so inclined, and if you are able, please consider a donation in Memoriam on Doug's behalf to:

The Spring of Tampa Bay, Inc.
P. O. Box 5147
Tampa Fl. 33675

Cremation rights have been accorded by Hartsell Funeral Home & Cremation, Harrisburg, NC.

Hartsell Funeral Home of Harrisburg is serving the Taylor family.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Lt. Col. Douglas Taylor (Retired), please visit our flower store.


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