Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Bruce Taylor ... You Will Be Missed

This is a place where people who loved Bruce Taylor may feel free to write a memory they have of him, a story, or to say goodbye to a good friend.  Please share your thoughts by clicking on the "Comments" at the bottom of the tribute below.  You need not be a cyclist to share a memory here.

The California Triple Crown family lost a really good friend with the passing of Bruce Taylor on Saturday, February 6, 2010.
 
The above photo of Bruce and Lynn Katano was taken in May of 2009 on the Glendora Ridge Road by Ron Hanson.  Bruce was proudly wearing his extremely hard earned Shenandoah 1200K Jersey after completing that 750 Mile Non-Stop ride the summer before.  Bruce wrote up a great ride report of his Shenandoah 1200K adventure HERE.

Steve Meichtry rode many miles with Bruce on California Triple Crown Double Centuries and Brevets.  He assembled his favorite ones of Bruce as a memorial to this great ultra cycling guy HERE

Steve Meichtry, Bruce Taylor, and Chris Hanson - Three Amigos

Bruce always had the biggest smile!!  :)

One of my first memories of riding with Bruce was on the Lake Mathews Century of January 3, 2004 here:
Chuck Bramwell, Steve Pohle, Mike Burns, Bruce Taylor,
and Chuck Phillips

It was the first of many hard rides that Bruce and I shared together.  He was always a good buddy to ride with.  He knew the importance of training hard in preparation for the harder events which we both went on to accomplish successfully.

Bruce went on to complete 32 California Triple Crown Double Centuries including many of the most difficult ones in California as shown HERE  He was a Gold Thousand Mile Club Finisher in 2008 by completing 5 Double Centuries and volunteering at one of them that year!!

In May of 2007, Bruce rode the Breathless Agony Century and I was able to capture these fun photos of him hard at work that cold day.

Bruce at Rest Stop 1 in Beamont

Bruce climbing the brutally steep Oak Glen Climb

Bruce arrives at Onyx Summit at 8,443 Feet

George Vargas and Bruce rode many miles together
 on the San Diego Brevets

Bruce rode magnificently that day completing the course in 6:17.
He trained really hard that year.
All of his hard work paid off that day.

Just 3 months after those photos were taken, Bruce traveled to Paris and completed the most challenging 750 Mile Non-Stop Paris-Brest-Paris!!

Bruce, Mike Miller, Suzy Degazon, and Jana Lingo
 before a 200K Brevet

Mike Tsoi, Bruce Taylor, Chuck Bramwell, Jon Shellenbarger,
Doug Patterson and Jerry Brown
on the Long Beach Fixed Gear Century of January 17, 2009

Bruce's wife, Jeanne, wrote: "Hello, first I would like to thank all of you for the outpouring of well wishes and concerns for our family. It means a lot to know that Bruce has so many friends out there in the cycling world. I have received so many emails and will try to respond to as many as I can at a later date. Here is the information on the memorial service.

Friday February 12, 2010
10:00am
Calvary Chapel Rancho Cucamonga
10700 Towne Center Drive
Rancho Cucamonga CA 91730

In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made in Bruce’s memory at Livestrong.org. Please pass along to anyone I may have missed."

His obituary on the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin is HERE.

Deb and Brian Bowling of Planet Ultra wrote:
"As some of you may have heard, our cycling community has lost a great friend, Bruce Taylor. Bruce passed away Sunday from injuries he sustained in a cycling crash.

Bruce joined the ultra cycling community in 2002 – and committed himself whole-heartedly from the start! That first year, he completed the California Triple Crown with Grand Tour, Knoxville and Death Valley Fall. He wore that CTC jersey proudly. After he won it, he just kept on pedaling; always with a beautiful and contagious smile on his face.

Between 2002 and 2009, Bruce completed 32 doubles, and was a California Triple Crown winner 6 times! He was a Planet Ultra Grand Slam finisher in 2007. During these 8 years, Bruce also rode 33 RUSA sanctioned brevets, including 10 in 2007 on his way to completing one of the most prestigious long-distance amateur cycling events in the world, Paris-Brest-Paris. A very impressive ultra cycling resume, indeed.

Bruce was a passionate cyclist who shared his love of the sport with so many of us along the way. We enjoyed sharing the road with him – and he will be missed.

Bruce’s wife, Jeanne, and all of his family and close friends are in our thoughts and prayers. We wish them strength and love in these painful, sad times. We hope they find comfort knowing that Bruce had so many friends in the cycling community.

A memorial service will be held for Bruce on Friday, February 12, 2010, at 10:00am at the Calvary Chapel in Rancho Cucamonga located at 10700 Towne Center Drive. In lieu of flowers, Bruce’s wife Jeanne has asked that donations be made in Bruce's memory to the Lance Armstrong Foundation at http://www.livestrong.org/

Rest in Peace, Bruce.

With love,
Deb & Brian"

A beautiful photo tribute at Bruce's Memorial Service

Bruce's ride numbers and California Triple Crown Plaques

Bruce's Paris-Brest-Paris Jersey

Bruce's California Triple Crown Mug

I was looking through my e-mails today from Bruce … he was always so helpful, thankful, and just plain nice … both on the bike and off.

From now on, the “East Fork Century” will be known as “Bruce Taylor’s East Fork Century”. All of those who have ridden it will always remember Bruce’s great work on creating a beautiful route taking us on many roads that we seldom had seen before.

On November 24, 2007, we rode the Mount Baldy Century.  Bruce always loved climbing up to Mount Baldy even in hurricane force winds which we ran into that day.  Bruce is wearing his Blue Planet Ultra Grand Slam vest here as we headed up the climb that day.  I'm so sure he had his big smile going ear to ear.  :) 

And that's how I'll long remember my buddy Bruce Taylor.  Going full speed ahead right up a major mountain climb with a big smile on his face.

I’ll miss you Bruce.  I'll miss your help.  I'll miss your big smile going ear to ear. 

Your buddy,

Chuck

23 comments:

Chuck Bramwell said...

"The finish line is just the beginning of a whole new race.
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience
We're spiritual beings having a human experience"
Susan Saint James who lost her 14 year old son in a plane crash

Amy said...

As our friends said to my husband before he passed on -
Bruce - we will see you at the next control.
Thoughts go out to Bruce's family - its hard to loose the go to guy.

M. O'Neill said...

Bruce will be missed as a friend that you could always count on for a good story, a laugh, and a smile larger than the moon. My empthy and thoughts to the family.

Chuck Bramwell said...

I added a photo of Bruce with the Saturday Century guys from the Long Beach Fixed Gear Century of January 17, 2009. The next day, Bruce wrote me: "I rode 96 miles. I always have such a great time riding with the group. It was good to see everyone again. Hope we can do this event again on fixed gear bikes. It was a blast. Bruce"

Chuck

Chuck Bramwell said...

Tom Parkes wrote:

"Thanks for the message about Bruce Taylor. He will be missed and he will always be with us as long as we keep riding. My conscious tells me I better show up this Saturday morning for your century training ride. It looks like Bruce has worked out some good weather for us. I hope he's working on good weather for all the doubles since a good soul like him undoubtedly has access to some special high places of influence.

Tom Parkes"

Chuck Bramwell said...

Clay Sharp wrote:

"Never an easy thing to lose a family member. Nice write up.

Thanks
Clay"

Chuck Bramwell said...

Jim Von Tungeln wrote:

"Thanks Chuck.
I pray all is well with you these days, and I will place Bruce's family on my prayer list.
Blessings,
Jim von Tungeln"

Chuck Bramwell said...

Alan Ptak wrote:

"Chuck, thank you for the thoughtful tribute to Bruce.

It's clear Bruce left a positive impression on so many people in the cycling community, and likely on every community, group and individual he touched too.

I'm sure he'd be very honored to have a ride named in his memory.

Alan"

Chuck Bramwell said...

Tim Sullivan wrote:

"I read Bruce's report about a year ago or so. He had some kind remarks for me and I am very appreciative of his words.

This week the Shenandoah 1200 website was done so I had Matt Settle forward it to me so that I could read it again and remember riding with Bruce.

As you said in your email when you sent out the pictures of Bruce during the Breathless Agony, Bruce was nice man. I will always remember him fondly.

Tim Sullivan"

Chuck Bramwell said...

Frank Baker wrote:

"Sorry to hear of the passing of your close friend. Although I did not know him, it sounds like he was a great guy. Another serious reminder for us all to make every day count for something good."

Chuck Bramwell said...

Bobbi Fisher wrote from the other side of the world in China:

"Chuck...

This was wonderful... Thank you so much...great memories. Bruce was a lot faster rider than I am, but every once in a while he would just ride next to me to chit chat .... Lovely....

Bobbi"

Chuck Bramwell said...

Ken Campbell wrote:

"My father was killed in a glider airplane crash out in Hemet about 25 years ago. Flying sailplanes was his hobby and he owned his own. After all these years the thing that stands out is that he died doing what he loved and that has always been of some comfort to our family. There was an outpouring of support from the glider community also and that seemed to help some. Bruce will be missed he was just a good guy like my father was."

Chuck Bramwell said...

Mark Dehanke wrote:

"Mike Sturgill and I met Bruce at the 2003 Terrible Two.. Which was, with the attentdant 100 plus degree temperatures, quite terrrible. Bruce rode to the start, in my truck with Sturgill and myself. On occasion, we in the Bullshifters, would see, ride with, and chat with Bruce on some of the doubles. Yes, he was a very pleasant person to ride with and talk with. Value what you have, and enjoy every day. Bruce will be missed."

Lynn said...

...attended the beautiful tribute to Bruce Taylor this morning. There was so much more to Bruce than, as just a cycling buddy, I ever knew. Incredible family man, friend and co-worker, accomplished craftsman and all-around great athlete, Bruce truly enjoyed life. His bright smile and uplifting personality will be truly missed.

Dion said...

A genuine nice guy - so it's not difficult to appreciate the enormity of the loss felt by his family. In contrast, my experiences with Bruce Taylor are rather narrow and somewhat insignificant. But nevertheless I remember him well.

I first met him at a campground before a brevet several years ago in Arizona, and then only saw him once or twice during the ride since he was a bit faster. When you could hold onto his wheel, he was always pleased to see you and made for a pleasant companion.

A couple of times we enjoyed meals together at places he found away from controls. He talked about his wife and daughter being with him for PBP '07, and how much he appreciated their support and how they enjoyed seeing France together. He was looking forward to possibly doing it again 2011, depending on work and finances. He was very independent of mind and self sufficient, as all randonneurs should be, but didn't hesitate for a moment to stop and ask if you needed help -- even stopping and offering to hold my rear wheel while I cut a bungee cord out of my rear cluster in Riverside two years ago.

Seeing his name and times on the results sheets always encouraged me to ride a bit faster in hope of spending more time with him. I'll miss him.

Dion Dyer

Chuck Bramwell said...

Suzy Degazon wrote:

"I just arrived home from an amazing celebration of life. Bruce was so much more than just a cyclist. I had the chance of car pooling with Bruce and cycling with him in Malibu Brevets and Camino Real Double.

I thought what you said was great, he will always be remembered for his smile.
A very Sad Athlete
Suzy (Ultrawoman)
www.suzydegazon.com"

Chuck Bramwell said...

I added a photo from Lynn Katano of a beautiful photo tribute at Bruce's Memorial Service from this morning. I think there were about 300 people at the Memorial Service. Bruce was an incredible man on and off the bike. I was honored to speak representing his cycling accomplishments. I was humbled to learn of the many other great things Bruce accomplished in his life. It was a magnificent service and I was glad that so many cyclists were there.

Chuck Bramwell said...

Chris Hanson wrote:

"Anny Beck and I had a conversation on the way back from the California Triple Crown Awards weekend a few years ago. We talked about the emotion and feelings expressed during the presentation. Keep in mind this breakfast is the morning after we have all tapped out 200 miles on the Knoxville Double. How the physical aspect of riding 200 miles strips away your outer self and bares your soul. Thats how I feel today. All of the riders at that breakfast share a passion for cycling, and the breakfast is like nothing I have ever experienced anywhere else in my life. Kind of like a family reunion but those that share a common passion. Bruce was part of our cycling family. When I read about his passing, it really hurt.

I met Bruce in 2005, riding the San Diego brevet series preparing for my first 1200k. It was my introduction to randonneuring, with Barclay Brown as RBA. Bruce, Pierre Moreels and I rode together at the events. We had a lot of fun together and Bruce was our leader. He had done several brevets in previous years and knew the ropes. Later, we would carpool to rides in places like Arizona or Northern California. Bruce and I shared a common love for history. We would talk and debate for hours. It was great to see him at the the door of my Hotel in France when we rode PBP in 2007. I recall seeing him returning to Paris from Brest as I was approaching the turnaround. He also saw me and we shouted a greeting at each other. He made a special effort to be present at the Awards Breakfast mentioned above when I was inducted into the Hall of Fame. This meant a lot to me. Bruce, we will miss you my friend."

Chuck Bramwell said...

Jerry Brown wrote:

"What I remember about Bruce is last year’s 400k or 600K in San Diego where he was coming back from a bike injury. He DNF’ed which is unusual for a Rando rider of his caliber. He went back to his car and then went back out on the route and helped other riders. I saw him at Carl’s Jr on a freezing cold night. I did not need help, but the warmth of his being there was burned into my memories forever. He was a kind a great man. I will miss him, and for those who are interested Chuck Bramwell has dedicated a ride to him this weekend to Oceanside which starts near OC airport. Life is precious, I want to remember each and every person I meet as precious and appreciate the brief moments we get to be in one another’s lives."

Chuck Bramwell said...

Mike Sturgill wrote:

"He was a very good friend of mine too. We have roomed together and ridden together many times. He asked me to be his "coach" for the past couple years. He wanted my help in getting faster on the ultra rides. You're correct about his positive attitude. He was always a joy to be around. Life is fragile and we need to relish every day we have. Tragedies like this bring those thoughts to the forefront of my mind. I loved your quote at the end of your email.

“God lends you people …
and he can take them back at any time … everyone of them.”
Bobby, a 56 Year Old Grandmother

That is so true!"

Chuck Bramwell said...

I added a photo of Bruce's ride numbers and California Triple Crown plaques, his Paris-Brest-Paris Jersey, and his California Triple Crown mug.

Jeanne Taylor said...

I would like to thank everyone for the kind comments, sharing of memories and pictures of Bruce here. I has been 6 months now, although at times, it seems like just yesterday that he was here with us. I look for him to come home from a ride, his bike in tow. But sadly, that is not the case.

Be careful out there. It saddens me to read of the recent passings of his fellow cyclists. I like to think they have found each other in heaven and are riding there with no worries about weather, road conditions or traffic.

Take care,
Jeanne Taylor

Andrea Lyn said...

Bruce,
So I stopped into Bed Bath & Beyond about a month ago. It’s probably been about a good 3 years since I saw you last. You were the VERY first person I asked about. My heart was saddened to hear the news that you are no longer with us. I always told myself that I was going to stop into Bed Bath & Beyond and give you an update on my life and how I finally finished school. And, boy, I am really kicking myself for not doing it sooner.
So you know, I value our conversations we had at work about running and bike riding, and I can’t for the life of me remember the name of that video you let me borrow on this bike ride that was somewhere in Europe, I think. Haha!
Well, guess what buddy, I got into bike riding last year. I completed my first triathlon back in September. I thought of you the whole time I trained. You know, I have always been a runner at heart, but I have made some room for my new found passion, cycling. I understand why you had so much heart and soul in the sport. I get it! I wish you were around so I could tell you in person and get some pointers from you. I’m sorry I took so long to stop by. You will always be an inspiration to me and I will think of you when I ride. Your friend, Andrea.