Mrs. Melba Laverne Cravens Taylor was the daughter of Oscar Cravens ( a farmer & Minister) and Mary Turrentine Cravens (a Homemaker) of Lockesburg, Arkansas. She was born the last of nine children of this Holy Union on November 4, 1924 and passed into Perfect Peace on July 9, 2020.
She joined the Macedonia United Methodist Church in Lockesburg at an early age and served faithfully in this church until she finished High School. After High School, she attended Philander Smith College in Little Rock, Arkansas and graduated trained as a Teacher with emphasis on English and Secreatarial Science. In order to maintain and enhance her teaching skill, during changing times, Melba attended Graduate classes at Arkansas State University, Southern Illinois University, Northern Illinois University, and Ball State University. This study resulted in the equivalent of a Master's Degree in Library Science. She was teacher in the Arkansas Communities of Centerpoint, Ashdown, Holly Grove and Osceola prior to joining the staff as a teacher/ librarian in the Caruthersville, Missouri School System. Melba worked in the Caruthersville School System from 1964 until her retirement in 1986. Melba loved learning and always encouraged a focus on study with her children, grandchildren, extended family and students.
Melba married the late John A. Taylor, a Teacher and School School Administrator in 1948. Two children, Jon A. Taylor, Jr. and Anetha Lavonne Taylor-McDonald were born to this Holy Union.
Melba was preceded in death by her parents, her husband and her daughter. Her three sisters, Ruth Cravens Wright, Daisy Cravens Cabean and Esther Cravens Sampson, along with her five brothers, Herman C. Cravens, Carl A. Cravens, John W. Cravens, Lester H. Cravens and Oscar Cravens, Jr. also preceded her in death.
Melba is survived by her son, John A. Taylor, Jr. of Harrisburg, Illinois, along with two grandchildren, Andrew J. McDonald of Quincy, Illinois and Analise M. McDonald of Decatur, Illinois. She is also survived by two sisters-in-law, Odester M. Taylor Tate and Essie Taylor Carter of Fresno, California. She is also loved and survived by many nieces, nephews other relatives, neighbors, friends and former students.
We celebrate the 95 years of life that God blessed us to have her with us. Yet, she will be tremendously and sincerely missed as a loving, kind compassionate, listener and giver of many good things.
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