Jackie Ray Taylor was born August 10, 1933, in the Texas panhandle town of Allison, where the population was less than 30 people at times. He was the third son of Bob and Kitty Taylor, who preceded him to heaven with brothers RC and Cliff. Two sisters completed the family; Doris, now deceased, and Beverly Brannan, who survives Jack with her husband Bill, sister-in-law, Charlene Taylor, her sons and wife, Andy & Julie Taylor, and Monte Taylor, as well as nephews Mike and Robert Wickersham, Chad Taylor, and niece, Trisha and her husband, Troy.
Jack graduated high school at the tender age of 15 and was the youngest student to earn a degree from Hardin-Simons University at 19 years old. At college, he met Barbara Sue Burkhart, whom he married. Mom helped shape Dad’s character and ministry like no other, except the Lord. They started a family in 1956, losing their first son, Terry Ray, to complications at birth. The reason Jack Taylor was such a good counsel to so many at their most difficult times of life was because he had personally experienced the worst that life could throw at a person. By God’s grace, Tamara Sue was born two years later to the very hour that Terry died. Timothy Paul rounded out the Taylor family, His sister and he survive their father, and mother, Barbara who passed in 2001 after a battle with cancer. Tamara Snell and her husband Bill, and their four children and wives, Kimber and Mark, Tim and Jamie, Chris, and Clay, also survive Dad. Kimber gave Dad his first three great-grandchildren, Aiden, Austin, and Cashton. Tim’s wife Michelle and he have two sons, Blake and Brice, who are married to Sarah and Rachel.
Mom stood with Dad for nearly 48 years and was his partner in ministry and life. Mom’s vivacious personality and relentless drive complemented Dad perfectly. After a lengthy battle with cancer, she was promoted in 2001. Her absence revealed his need for companionship. Jerry Bollinger became his second wife, and they were married for 21 months when she passed due to complications from a stroke induced by cancer. For the past 16 years, Wilfriede McDonald has been Dad’s faithful partner, and they made a grand pair. Dad was blessed to have known three dynamic and very special women as his wives. I know of few men who had the capacity to love like he did but love them, he did. They made his life sweeter and fuller. He made our lives deeper and more worthy. Jerry is survived by her family, Ty and Charlene Bollinger, Brianna, Bryce, Tabitha, and Charity, as well as Cherith and Dru Moore, Hallie, and Ashley, and Ron Bollinger.
Friede survives Jack with her children, Steve and Sheila, and their spouses, Jennifer and Adam. Steve has two sons and two daughters: Matthew and his wife, Jeramae with daughter Leila, Gabriel and his wife Brittney, Grace and her husband Tyler, and daughter Anna. Sheila has two daughters and a son. Dakota, and her husband Mark with their children Lillian, Charlie, Mary, and Phillip; Raquel and Sam with their daughter Charlotte, and Cecil. Friede has a total of seven Grandchildren and six Great-Grandchildren as listed previously.
Dad was always proud of the first church he pastored. New Hope #3 was situated near the West Texas town of Ranger. In the late 50s, Mom and Dad were called to a little suburb of San Antonio, increasing the membership of the Castle Hills First Baptist Church from 98 to 100. They served nearly 18 years in San Antonio, presiding over a congregation that eventually swelled to over 3000 in membership. In 1969, Jack was forever transformed by a personal encounter with the Holy Spirit in an upper room with Miss Bertha Smith and others. Soon, the name Jack Taylor became synonymous with the message of the Spirit-filled life. In the early 70s, God answered his prayer to save the worst people in the city. Guy and Evelyn Linton were the proprietors of the largest strip joints in South Texas. Kneeling around the coffee table in their palatial mansion, they gave their lives to Jesus with Mom, Dad, and the Rev. Bob Harrington present. The commitment to follow Jesus by these two notorious sinners turned the city upside down. Where once women paraded their naked flesh, the Gospel was now being preached. Countless strippers, bikers, druggees, hippies, carnies, and everyday sinners were ushered into the Kingdom over the next several months. One estimate records over 3000 people saved as a result of the move of God at Castle Hills. The revival would touch denominations and the world as the word spread like wildfire throughout the nation around the world.
Dad wrote his first book, The Key to Triumphant Living, in 1971. Its publication made him a household name among Southern Baptists. There are over one million copies of this book now in print. The demand for him to share the story of revival and the message of the Spirit-filled life thrust him into an itinerant ministry that lasted until his death. He was saved at age ten and preached his first sermon at 14, making him a believer in Jesus Christ for over 77 years and a minister of the Gospel for nearly 74.