The Rev. Warren Taylor Sr., who provided a wealth of services for his Central City flock, including housing, after-school programs and computer classes, died of a heart attack Oct. 9 at Ochsner Medical Center. He was 75.
Pastor Taylor, who had led the First Evangelist Missionary Baptist Church for 20 years, was a New Orleanian who graduated from the Arthur P. Clay Bible College and the Union Baptist Theological Seminary. He worked at churches in New Orleans and Pomona, Calif., before being installed at First Evangelist Baptist Church in 1993.
A year later, Pastor Taylor founded the First Evangelist Housing and Community Development Corp., which provides services such as housing for low- to moderate-income people and families, job referral services, a food bank, substance-abuse counseling and the Holy Hands Car Wash.
In his capacity as founding president, Pastor Taylor acquired more than 200 housing units, as well as several lots where homes could be built, and he was instrumental in working with the city to get abandoned and blighted homes demolished.
Because of his work, Pastor Taylor served on President Bill Clinton’s National Committee on Racism and worked on faith-based initiatives during George W. Bush’s presidency. He also led the Ministerial Advisory Board when Marc Morial was mayor of New Orleans.
He was chairman of the economic development boards of the Louisiana Freedmen Missionary Baptist General Association and the Cornerstone Missionary Baptist General association, and he was former president of the Christian Community Youth Against Drugs Foundation.
Survivors include his wife, Marion Taylor; three sons, Antonio and Warren Taylor Jr. of Pomona and Craig Taylor of Los Angeles; three daughters, Denise Taylor and Wanda Yamasaki of Pomona and Col. Cheryl Taylor-Whitehead of Fort Irwin, Calif.; a stepson, Alexander Hollomon Jr. of New Orleans; two stepdaughters, Denise Hollomon of Arlington, Texas, and the Rev. Valerie Waller of Sugar Land, Texas; six grandchildren; four step-grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; one step-great-grandchild; and a great-great-grandchild.
A musical tribute will be held Friday (Oct. 18) at 6:45 p.m. at First Evangelist Missionary Baptist Church, 1801 Willow St. Visitation will be from 1 to 6 p.m.
A funeral will be held Saturday (Oct. 19) at 10 a.m. at St. John Institutional Missionary Baptist Church, 2538 Jackson Ave. Visitation will start at 9 a.m. Burial will be in Providence Memorial Park. Estelle J. Wilson Funeral Home Inc. is in charge of arrangements.