JW Taylor, 98, of Fort Smith, AR, received his final award on Monday July 4, 2022. He was born on December 9, 1923 in Taylorsville, Mississippi.
J. W’s father perished in an oil field accident when he was nine years old. Being the eldest of five children, JW assumed the duties of the head of the family. He joined the Civilian Conservation Corps where he taught men to read and write. He then worked various odd jobs to support his family, allowing his sisters to go to college.
JW was president of his high school class and planned to go to college on a basketball scholarship. Instead, JW joined the army in 1943, where he was wounded and captured in the Battle of the Bulge in 1944, then sent to a POW camp at Bad Orb in Germany. He was repatriated in April 1945.
JW was trained and versatile in both offensive and counterintelligence. He had many important assignments during his career in Europe, Hawaii, Texas, Baltimore, the Presidio of Monterey, West Point, and across the United States, both covertly and overtly. JW was a seasoned linguist, fluent in Russian and German. He was also an expert in espionage and taught many young officers and enlisted men his trade, including polygraph operations.
He served as Deputy Director of the 66th Military Intelligence Group, headquartered in Munich, Germany. During his last posting in Europe as Land Hesse Liaison at the US Consulate in Frankfurt, Germany, he served as an interpreter for many dignitaries, two of his favorites being Henry Kissinger and Vice President Nelson Rockefeller.
Among his many accomplishments, JW was instrumental in the early collection of photos and information on the Francis Gary Powers U2 incident and later in the capture of the Bader-Meinhof gang responsible for the bombing. against the IG Farber building.
According to his closest aides, JW was a legend in the American intelligence community and USAINTS, (the Army Intelligence School at Fort Huachuca, Arizona), where he served as a commander until his retirement in 1981.
After retirement, he continued to do security sweeps and reviews for agencies in over 200 countries until he grew tired of all the travel.
JW married childhood sweetheart Callie Lou Welch in 1945; they had three daughters. They celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary shortly before Callie passed away in 2008.
JW married Jane Smith in 2012. JW is survived by his wife Jane, daughters Angela (Rayburn), of Booneville, four granddaughters and many granddaughters, and Abbie Taylor (Cox), of Fort Smith. A daughter, Loucrectia died in 2021.
Funeral arrangements will be announced by Lewis Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Program – River Valley PO Box 8108, Fort Smith, Arkansas 72902 and Billy Graham Ministries.
Posted on July 05, 2022
Posted in Southwest Times Record