A tribute to James Taylor AF5EI SK.

by Steve Beavers
I have held off on making this post until I spoke with his family this morning. Yesterday, a little after noon, Conway County lost an icon. James (Mr. Jim) Taylor passed away at Conway Regional Hospital. He proudly served his country during the Vietnam War. He brought the skills he learned back to his home in Conway County and used them to benefit everyone he met. He served proudly with the Conway County Fire Department for many years and would do anything to help them until the day he passed. He was an integral part of Conway County Office of Emergency Management for more years than I can count. He served as our communications officer up until a few months ago when he finally admitted that he needed to slow down a little bit (He didn’t really slow down much). He was always ready to help any time anyone needed it. He made sure to monitor storms, and make sure everyone was ok. He was the driving force behind the Arkansas Diamonds Radio Group, where he served as a board member. He always tried to keep the group moving in the right direction and grow. He was the catalyst behind many of the big projects that the Arkansas Diamonds is rolling out. Mr. Jim, serve his country and his community well. He also served his friends. Mr. Jim never met a stranger. After a few minutes, he was your friend. And there was a good chance that he would hand you a study guide and try to recruit you into amateur radio. I was fortunate enough to not only work with Jim, but also be friends. He helped me through a few tough places lately. He was always there to give good advice. It may not have been advice I wanted, but it was the advice I needed. He would come to my office and say “Boss, I’m headed to lunch and bingo”, “Boss, it’s commissary day, do you need anything” or “Boss, I’m headed to Tucker Mountain, call if you need anything”. I know he always meant it. As he was headed to the hospital, he made sure that I knew he would not be at work the next day. I know, he didn’t want us to worry about him if he wasn’t at the office. I know I am one of many who has been touched by Jim’s love. The last text that I got from Jim, simply read “Love too all”. He truly meant it. Mr. Jim was a one-of-a-kind person; a person we should all strive to be. He will be missed by many. AF5EI, we’ll take it from here.