Honoring accompanist who made music & impression

By Anna Carrera

Published 11/01 2013 05:06PM

Updated 11/08 2013 05:46PM

Update: 5:05 pm, 11/8/13, Friday
URBANA -- People said a final goodbye to a musical member of their family Friday. Todd Taylor spent the past 16-years working as the accompanist for Urbana High School. He played for three choirs there.

Taylor died last Wednesday after battling cancer. The Salem Baptist Church, where he also played organ, hosted a celebration of his life.
Original: 5:06 pm, 11/1/13, Friday
URBANA -- The high school singers are honoring a musical member of their family. Their choir accompanist died this week.

This is another big loss for Urbana High School students since classes started. 52-year old Todd Taylor died Wednesday after battling cancer. He had worked at the high school for 16 years.

They just lost a classmate in September. Nancy Phetchareune was in the orchestra. Choir students came up with an idea to try to ease the pain.

Mr. Taylor accompanied three choirs at the school. The students decided to get together to sing, so that's why they did Friday afternoon.

They didn't do it for an audience even though some people from the school stopped to listen. They say they did it for Mr. Taylor and one of his closest partners at work, Mr. Douce, who's the choir director.

People who knew Mr. Taylor say he loved to be behind the keyboard. Pastor Claude Shelby says Taylor got his musical start at the Salem Baptist Church, in Champaign. He played the organ there for the church's services until a few months ago. The pastor says Christian music was Mr. Taylor's forte. 

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