HAWADRDEN, IOWA ~ Taylor Hay Flynn died on Sunday, December 31, 2023, at the Hawarden Regional Healthcare Hospital at 89 years of age. Taylor had a multi-year battle with cancer, and had recently contracted pneumonia.
Public visitation with the family present will begin at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, January 5 at Porter Funeral Home in Hawarden, with a Prayer Service at 7:00 p.m. Private burial service will be on Saturday morning, followed by a public Memorial Service at Big Springs Baptist Church in rural Alcester, South Dakota, at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 6 with Pastor Dave Moore officiating. The family requests any memorials be directed to either Big Springs Baptist Church or the Hawarden Historical Society. THE FUNERAL SERVICE AS BEEN RECORDED AND IS ON THE BIG SPRINGS BAPTIST CHURCH YOUTUBE PAGE.
Taylor was born on May 7, 1934, in Sioux City, IA, the son of Dr. Walter and Carrie (Lilja) Flynn. He had one younger sibling, Stuart, born in 1938. Taylor attended Bryant School in Sioux City prior to Walter relocating his dentistry practice to Hawarden in 1941. Taylor attended Iowa Boys State in 1952 and graduated from Hawarden High School in 1953, where he was Senior Class President. He played basketball all four years and was known as “the Senator”, and especially enjoyed playing with his good friend, Bob Johnson. Taylor then attended the University of Iowa for a time, participating in the ROTC, prior to returning in Hawarden to enter the workforce. Following a job at the Lee Store (current day Booth Drug), he began work at Dowdey’s Furniture, where he worked from 1956-1986, becoming sales manager in 1960. Many remember Taylor “the Sailor” on “Howdy Dowdey’s” Hawarden news roundup over KLEM in the 1960s. Following closure of Dowdey’s, Taylor was employed at Inwood Furniture from 1986-2008, spending a total of 52 years in the furniture business where he developed a gift for sales and small talk.
Taylor and Kathleen (Nylund) were united in marriage on April 28, 1961, enjoying over 62 years of marriage together and raising four boys -- Grant, Paul, Jay, and Colin. Taylor was a reverent follower of the Lord throughout his life and hoped the same for his family and those he met. He was a long-time member of Big Springs Baptist Church, where he served on the Deacon Board for many years. Taylor was a lifelong singer, participating in various musical arrangements throughout his schooling and at Big Springs, and he cited Hal and Priscilla Shoemaker as his early musical mentors. On the civic side, he was a charter member of the Hawarden Jaycees, and served as an elected member of the Hawarden Park Board for 40 years, from 1963-2003. Highlights during this period included construction of the Rocket Slide and the Veteran’s Memorial addition to the City Park. In his later years, he served as a participating member of the Hawarden Historical Society and enjoyed volunteering at Calliope Village, sponsoring the medical building, as well as delivering Meals on Wheels.
Following retirement, he and Kathleen enjoyed bus tours to the U.S. Southeast and Southwest, along with traveling to see his children and their grandchildren throughout the U.S. and overseas, including multiple trips to London, UK, and Bogota, Colombia.
Taylor was an enthusiastic photographer (always patient for the perfect shot, despite his family’s impatience) and he enjoyed following his children and grandchildren’s extracurricular activities, creating scrapbooks for nearly all of them until the last few years. He collected postage stamps along with sports and train memorabilia, and enjoyed researching family genealogy and Hawarden history. His favorite car was a 1928 Ford Model A, and he was a huge fan of the Minnesota Twins and Iowa Hawkeyes, attending the Rose Bowl in 2016 with his son where the Hawkeyes unfortunately lost (again).
Taylor was preceded in death by his parents, and brother Stuart. He is survived by his wife Kathleen; four children - Grant (Shannon) of Norwalk, Paul (Christa) of Kremmling, CO, Jay (Aimee) of rural Hawarden, and Colin (Juliette) of Williamsburg, VA; five grandchildren - Jacob, Kane, Theo, Lucas, and Gabrielle Flynn; four step-grandchildren - Kooper, Baxter, Booker, and Skyler Walsh; and a sister-in-law. Andrea Knudson of Madison, Georgia. His family will miss Dad and Grandpa, but will remember his faith and love of family and friends. We will especially cherish memories of his famous phrases, such as “for the love of Mike”, “for Pete’s Sake”, and finally, “a guy can’t do anything around here!”