Susan Lynne Shank Taylor, age 70, went to be with her Lord and Savior on April 19, 2023, after a brief
illness. Susan was born on June 21, 1952, in Hershey, Pa. to the late Ralph and Louise Hess Shank. She
was also preceded in death by a brother, Steve Shank, an infant brother, Timothy Shank, a brother-in-
law Jim Elkins, and a sisters-in-law Anne Taylor and Zeta Stewart.
Susan is survived by her husband of 42 years, Van Taylor; beloved daughters: Maggie Taylor, of Athens,
Ga, Jenni Taylor, of Calhoun, Ga. and Hope (Chase) Coots of Calhoun, Ga; she is also survived by a
granddaughter, Paisley Holland, a greatly anticipated grandson, Palmer Coots, and siblings: Cindy Elkins
of Watkinsville, Ga. and Jonathan Shank of Hawkinsville, Ga.; also sisters-in-laws: Marilyn Ashworth, of
Calhoun, Ga and Betty (Jimmy) Taylor, of Cordele, Ga.
Susan was 1970 graduate of Warner Robins HS and a proud 1974 graduate of the University of Georgia.
It was at the University of Georgia where she first met her husband, Van, and became a huge Dawg fan.
A big Atlanta Braves fan since the days of Hank Aaron’s chase of #715, she was introduced to NASCAR
upon marrying Van. After watching Earnhardt, Gordon, Johnson, etc. for a couple of years and attending
a few races in Atlanta, NASCAR came to dominate Sunday afternoon TV time in the Taylor home. If Van
wanted to watch the Braves or Falcons, he had to find another TV!
But Susan’s main passion in life in addition to serving her Savior, was the great and sacrificial love for her
family and of children in general. Whether it was encouraging her girls as they participated in activities
ranging from HS musicals to gymnastics, or her helping Maggie and Jenni mummify a chicken for a
science project during the 7 years she home-schooled her two older girls, she was there offering
encouragement. Her love of children was exhibited in her 30+ year teaching career in public schools,
and her love and devotion to the children’s programs of the churches where she was a member. She
retired last spring from Belwood Elementary School after spending some 20+ years there, primarily
teaching 4th and 5th grade Social Studies. From the Civil War to the trenches of Verdun to the Holocaust,
you didn’t leave Ms. Taylor’s class without some indelible impressions on your mind. She was a fixture in
her church nurseries and, along with her close friend Debbie, was the backbone of a successful puppet
ministry at Sonoraville Baptist Church for a number of years. But perhaps the greatest example of
Susan’s love for children occurred during those home-schooling years, when God placed a baby girl in
her arms that desperately needed a mother. Time would prove that, as always, God knew what he was
Funeral Services for Susan Shank Taylor will be conducted at Trinity Baptist Church in Calhoun at 3:00pm
Sunday afternoon April 23, 2023, with Rev. Jason Graves and Rev. Jerry Adair officiating.
The family will receive friends from 5:00 to 8:00 pm on Saturday, also at Trinity Baptist Church.
Honored guests include the current and former staff who served with Susan at Belwood and Red Bud
Elementary Schools, as well as members of the Gideons International.
Flowers may be sent, but contributions to the Gideons International are also welcome and may be sent to
The Gideons International, PO Box 1254, Calhoun, Ga. 30703, or to a charity of your choice.
Per Susan’s request, her body was cremated, and her ashes will be distributed at a later date in places
that brought joy to her soul.