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ELIZABETH NEEVES TAYLOR

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Birth Date: 1917
Birth Place: Indianapolis, Indiana
Passed Away: 1979

Honored By

Donor names:   Saundra and Christopher Taylor
Date submitted: October 24, 2006
Gift: Leaf Tile - small
Location on plaza map: C5
Areas of Achievement: Arts, Community Building, Home Making, Literature
 
Elizabeth "Libby" Taylor was a true romantic. She was born and grew up in Indianapolis, the only child of Marjorie and Harold Neeves. As a young girl and teenager, she spent much of her time bedridden with osteomyelitis, a vascular condition in her legs. She met the challenges of being separated from her peers during high school by exploring novels, and beauty and nature outside her window. She eventually overcame her physical problems, graduating from Northwestern University with a degree in French literature. While there she met and married her knight in shining armor, William Taylor. Together they had 4 children (Bill, Kit, Jackie, and Gail) during the World War II years and settled outside of Cleveland to raise their family.

Libby was a busy homemaker and an animal lover. At any one time there were chickens, goats, a horse, rabbits, ducks, sheep, cats, dogs, a squirrel, and a 6-foot pet blue indigo snake, cleverly named Rover so as not to scare away visitors to the house. Libby was passionate about making a difference in her community of Brecksville, Ohio, so she became a consumer advocate and she started a weekend canteen for youth. The beginnings of “rock and roll” in the late 50’s and early 60’s provided the teens with live acts at “Libby’'s Canteen” from “well-known” Pat Boone to an “unknown” Elvis Presley.

Following a divorce and struggle with alcohol, she married Frank DeFrench and moved to central Florida for a new start. She grew prize-winning lilies and created Bonsai trees, settling into an active retirement community. Libby died of cardiac complications, following additional surgery on her legs. All through her life she accepted other people as they were and she enriched their lives with her smile, beauty, vision, gentleness, unassuming spirit, and an ethereal presence.