It's fitting, perhaps, that it begins here on Chimborazo Boulevard, his spirit serenaded by the trombone-blaring jam band that Apostle Anthony Taylor started not long after moving to Richmond 18 years ago. The pastor of United House of Prayer for All People in Church Hill was on his way home from Wednesday night prayer service last week when the accident happened, during a police chase no less, at the intersection of 31st and P streets, a mere three blocks from the church.
Taylor, 44, was more than a preacher, he was a community “hero,” Delegate Delores McQuinn told a gathering last week to celebrate Taylor's life. He opened computer labs in the community, held clothing and toy drives, created a “transportation ministry” to help those without cars. But the band, a New Orleans-style shout band, was his most visible mark. He pulled in kids off the streets, collected used instruments, taught them to march. They compete in national competitions now, but they are perhaps most well-known for their funeral appearances, turning tears into joy, a celebratory sendoff.
The horns blared through the streets again last week for Apostle Taylor, but by no means were they sending him off. The band leader is only just getting started.
Ziquon Irving, 6, who attends United Hosue of Prayer, was among those to attend Apostle Taylor's memorial vigil last week.Click here to see a multimedia feature of the memorial vigil honoring Apostle Taylor.