Sometimes, it’s the simplest of things that sparks an attraction between to people.

For Big Mama, it was simply responding to a request. Big Mama was at a Fourth of July biker rally near Coronado’s Camp and two bands were schedule to play. She asked the first band to play a Lynyrd Skynyrd song, but they couldn’t. Then the asked the second band, led by Terry Taillon, the same thing.

“He just happened to play my favorite Lynyrd Skynyrd song,” Big Mama said.

And that began a romance that resulted in a twenty-year marriage and a love that will never end despite Tallon’s death on April 21.

Taillon, founder of Mercy Church Motorcycle Ministries, located in Hawley, joined forces with Grace United Methodist Church in Abilene to form Grace and Mercy United Church. Before Taillon’s untimely death, he and Bo Whitaker co-pastored the church on Grape Street. Taillon, 54, died after a short illness.

“He was so alive,” Whitaker said, “it’s hard for people around him to believe it.”


Terry Taillon at a church dinner in December 2019. Taillon, 54, died April 21. Photo by Loretta Fulton

Date for a celebration of life service has not been set. Services are pending with Girdner Funeral home.

Big Mama said everyone loved Taillon, who also was known as Blind Terry due to being blind from birth. He did not let blindness deter him as a muscian or affect his personality.

“He was very, very funny,” Big Mama said.

How to help
To help Big Mama with monetary or other donations, contact Bo Whitaker, 673-3096

His obituary noted his humor and his love of people.

“Terry never met a stranger,” the obituary said. “Along with those mentioned, he also had a biker family, a church family and an unfathomable amout of friends.”

About 30 friends and family turned out Sunday, April 26, at Grace and Mercy United Church, said Whitaker, who will continue as the church’s pastor. A pianist and guitarist Richard “Star” Emry will provide music.

Popular features at the church are a Thursday night dinner and a fourth Saturday bean and cornbread meal. Both meals are followed by worship.

The collaboration between Mercy Church Motorcycle Ministries in Hawley and Grace United Methodist Church in Abilene came about after the Hawley ministry posted a notice on Facebook that it needed a larger place to meet.

A member of Grace UMC in Abilene saw the notice and replied. A union was formed that benefitted both congregations. In United Methodist parlance, the union is known as a cooperative ecumenical parish, with the Grace UMC members remaining tied to that denomination. The collaboration came with the blessings of the Bishop W. Earl Bledsoe, who leads the Northwest Texas Annual Conference of the UMC, and George Price, superintendent of the church’s Abilene District.

Taillon was born in Abilene and and earned a bachelor of science degree in professional studies from Southwestern Assemblies of God University. His calling was music and preaching the gospel.

“Terry was devoted to his ministry at Grace and Mercy churches,” his obituary said, “and worked tirelessly feeding the homeless and preaching the goodness of God to all that would listen.”

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