Dave Obee       Local History / Family History

HOME   |   SPEAKING SCHEDULE   |   TOPICS   |   ABOUT DAVE   |   BOOKS   |   CANGENEALOGY   |  
Genealogy Columns   |   Victoria History   |   Book Reviews

dave obee Newspaper reports on Ryan's death


ryan taylor Kitchener-Waterloo Record, Globe and Mail, Ottawa Citizen, Fort Wayne News-Sentinel, and Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, October 15, 2006.
Obituary placed by Ryan's family

Indianapolis Star, October 5, 2006:
Allen County genealogist drowns in Niagara River

News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 4, 2006:
Colleague recalls Taylorís affability

News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 4, 2006:
Body IDíd as libraryís Taylor

Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 4, 2006:
Body IDíd as city genealogist

Buffalo News, October 4, 2006:
Man found dead in river was writer from Indiana

News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 3, 2006:
Body of missing library genealogist IDíd in N.Y.

Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 3, 2006:
Remains likely to be identified today

Times Colonist, Victoria, British Columbia, October 2, 2006:
A good friend gone too soon, a good man remembered

Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 1, 2006:
Family waits for ruling by coroner

The Record, Kitchener-Waterloo, September 30, 2006:
Genealogist 'loved the hunt'

Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, September 30, 2006:
Library genealogist feared dead

News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, September 30, 2006:
Body may be ACPL staffer

City News, Toronto, September 28, 2006:
Toronto Police Looking For Missing Indiana Man

Buffalo News, September 27, 2006:
Identity of body found in Niagara River sought

Buffalo News, September 26, 2006:
Man's body recovered near Niagara River intakes



These reports are reproduced here as they appeared in the original sources. Some of them contain errors. All have been included, however, in an attempt to provide a comprehensive collection of the news coverage.

Kitchener-Waterloo Record, Globe and Mail, Ottawa Citizen, Fort Wayne News-Sentinel, and Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, October 15, 2006.

Obituary placed by Ryan's family

TAYLOR, Ronald Ryan Wilbert
(1950-2006)
Genealogist/Librarian

The unexpected passing of Ron (Ryan) Taylor on Sept. 25, 2006 is announced with deep sadness. Ron was characterized by warmth, thoughtfulness and generosity, and beloved as a son, brother, uncle and great-uncle to an extent he perhaps did not realize. He was born in Oshawa, Ontario, the dear son of Velma (Woodward) and the late Charles Taylor, and is also mourned by his brother Doug (the late Tish), his sister Pat (Robert) Hursti, his nieces and nephews Nelson (Sheila) Hursti, Laura (Bruce) Dawson, Andrew (Maria) Taylor and Gillian Taylor, as well as seven grandnieces and grandnephews.

Ron was an esteemed and popular genealogist who had worked at his chosen field since his teen-age years. He published and lectured extensively in his profession, gaining a reputation for his research capabilities and lively speaking style.

For the Taylor and Woodward families, he was our own family researcher, recorder and raconteur whose forty years of gathering family tree information and anecdotes is a cherished legacy. He will be greatly mourned and long missed, not only by his family and colleagues in the genealogical world, but also by his wide circle of friends.

There will be a private family funeral service to be followed at a later date by a memorial celebration. Funeral arrangements by McIntosh-Anderson Funeral Home, 152 King St E, Oshawa, Ont. Telephone 905-433-5558.

Ryan was a faculty member of the University of Toronto and the National Institute for Genealogical Studies' online education program. The Ryan Taylor Scholarship Fund has been established through the University of Toronto to provide annual scholarships. To make a donation, please make your cheque payable to: University of Toronto; please reference 'The Ryan Taylor Scholarship Fund' on your cheque and mail to the National Institute for Genealogical Studies, ATTN: Louise St Denis, 30 Wellington Street East, Suite 2002, Toronto, Ont. M5E 1S3. A tax receipt will be issued.

Charitable donations may also be sent to the Canadian Bible Society.


Indianapolis Star, October 5, 2006:

Allen County genealogist drowns in Niagara River

Fort Wayne -- A genealogist at the Allen County Public Library who went to Toronto to film a television program drowned in the Niagara River, officials in New York said.

Ronald Taylor, 56, was reported missing to Toronto police Sept. 24, a day before the U.S. Coast Guard recovered his body on the New York side of the river. Taylor's remains were taken to the Erie County Medical Examiners office in Buffalo, N.Y., for an autopsy last week.

Toronto police had said Taylor suffered from diabetes and depression, which required him to take medication daily.

Police do not suspect foul play, but the coroner's office has not determined whether his death was an accident or suicide.

Taylor had gone to Toronto to film a new genealogy series, "Ancestors in the Attic," for the Canadian TV channel History Television.

Taylor, a native of Ontario, was considered an expert in genealogy, said Steve Myers, who helped bring Taylor to the Allen County Public Library in the mid-1990s. He wrote several books and developed a course on how to trace English ancestors, Myers said.


News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 4, 2006:

Colleague recalls Taylorís affability:
The genealogist had many interests and a "great sense of humor."

By Jeff Wiehe

Ronald "Ryan" Taylor traveled so much that his colleagues at the Allen County Public Library thought nothing of it when he didnít show up at the start of work Sept. 26.

A week later, they learned the 300-pound body of a bearded man pulled from the Niagara River had been identified as their co-worker and friend.

Quite frequently, the 56-year-oldís travel plans changed at the last second. His co-workers knew he was in Toronto filming a documentary called "Ancestors in the Attic" for the History Channel and was scheduled to fly back to Fort Wayne on Sept. 25.

They were told at the end of the 26th he had been reported missing.

"It was just not like him to not be in touch with someone from his friends or family," said Steve Myers, assistant manager of the libraryís Genealogy Department. "When we heard the body had been discovered, then we really feared the worst had actually happened."

Born in Oshawa, Ontario, Taylor worked at the library for 12 years as a genealogy cataloguer. His specialties included working with patrons researching Canadian and English backgrounds, as well as speaking to outside groups and at national conferences.

He was already well-known in Canada and the United States before coming to Fort Wayne; his time here gave U.S. genealogists a chance to hear lectures from a man whose name theyíd only seen in print, Myers said.

"It was a great stroke of fortune for us (to hire him)," Myers said. "It took a little convincing to get him to move to a different country, but I think he was glad for the opportunity."

While in Fort Wayne, Myers helped write a book about the history of the Zollner Pistons, Fort Wayneís old NBA team that became the Detroit Pistons, and collaborated on an exhaustive history of the Komets.

Myers said Taylorís interests ranged from the opera to cooking and traveling. He said Taylor enjoyed people and could mix with anyone, from athletes to politicians or people off the street.

Taylor had a great sense of humor, Myers said, and could always cite amusing anecdotes to make a point when telling a story.

"He was very generous to his friends and family.V


News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 4, 2006:

Body IDíd as libraryís Taylor:
Dental records identify genealogist, who drowned in Niagara River.


By Jeff Wiehe

Investigators confirmed Tuesday the naked body pulled from the lower Niagara River last week belongs to Allen County Public Library genealogist Ronald "Ryan" Taylor -- who had been feared dead by many of his friends and colleagues.

Taylor, 56, was found floating in the river in Lewiston, N.Y., on Sept. 25, a day after he vanished while filming a documentary for the History Channel in Toronto. A fisherman spotted the body near the New York Power Authority and a gorge called Devilís Hole, roughly two miles north of Niagara Falls.

According to a Niagara County Sheriffís Department report, Taylor drowned. Medical examiners in Erie County, N.Y., had been waiting for dental records to identify the body. The sheriffís department said, "Investigation did not reveal any suspicious circumstances surrounding his death." Police will decide whether to rule Taylorís death an accident, suicide or homicide after further investigation.

William Carosella, an investigator with the Niagara County Sheriffís Department, said the water where Taylor was found is often referred to as "The Whirlpool" because of its turbulent, circular rapids.

The area around the Whirlpool is home to several charter fishing companies that cater to tourists. Carosella said it is not unusual to find a body unclothed in the river because the rapids strip clothes away or because people just leave them on shore before they enter the water. Taylorís clothes have not been found, which Carosella also said is not unusual.

Carosella estimated 10 bodies turn up in the river on this side of the border annually: some from suicides, some from accidents and others from people trying to cross the border.

The day after he vanished, Taylor missed a scheduled flight from Toronto to Fort Wayne. His bags were found in his hotel room in Toronto. Investigators think Taylor might have taken a bus from Toronto to Niagara Falls hours before his body was discovered. A Toronto Police Services report released after he was reported missing said he suffered from diabetes and depression for which he required daily medication.


Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 4, 2006:

Body IDíd as city genealogist:
Drowned in river after Toronto visit


By Amanda Iacone

An Allen County Public Library genealogist who went missing last week in Toronto is the man who drowned in the Niagara River, officials in New York state said Tuesday.

Ronald "Ryan" Taylorís remains were taken to the Erie County Medical Examinerís office in Buffalo, N.Y., for an autopsy last week. Pathologists there used Taylorís dental records to verify the identity of the remains, which were pulled from the lower gorge of the Niagara River on Sept. 25.

Taylor, 56, was reported missing to Toronto police the day before the U.S. Coast Guard recovered his body on the New York side of the river. Toronto police had said that Taylor suffered from diabetes and depression, which required Taylor to take medication daily.

Investigators with the Niagara County Sheriffís Department believe Taylor may have bought a bus ticket from Toronto to the Niagara Falls area. Police donít suspect foul play in connection with Taylorís drowning, but the coronerís office has not determined whether his death was an accident or suicide.

Taylorís friends and family are still wondering what happened to him, said Steve Myers, who helped bring Taylor to the Allen County Public Libraryís genealogy department in the mid-1990s. Taylor was considered an expert in genealogy and was a cataloger for the department.

He had gone to Toronto to film a new genealogy program called "Ancestors in the Attic" for the Canadian TV channel History Television. Taylor, a native of Ontario who had previously done radio work, was the host of the show.

Taylorís family had struggled to wait so long to hear confirmation of what Myers described as everyoneís worst fears. But Tuesdayís news will now allow those who knew the researcher to work through their grief, Myers said.

No funeral arrangements have been made. But the family plans to have a small family ceremony soon, with a memorial service in Canada to follow. His friends and colleagues in Fort Wayne will most likely conduct another memorial service, Myers said.

Taylor was known locally for his book about Komets hockey and a book about the Zollner Pistons. He has also published books on womenís diaries from the Victorian era and a book on tea time, Myers said.

Taylor lived in England for a few years and enjoyed reading the long and sometimes critical obituaries in the (London) Times. He developed a course on how to trace English ancestors, which he taught in the Salt Lake City area. Taylor also taught for the University of Toronto, Myers said.

He is survived by siblings, nieces, and nephews, all of whom live in Canada, Myers said.


Buffalo News, October 4, 2006:

Man found dead in river was writer from Indiana

LEWISTON - The Erie County medical examiner Tuesday identified a man whose body was found in the Lower Niagara River on Sept. 25 as Ronald "Ryan" Taylor, of Fort Wayne, Ind.

Taylor drowned, and there was no foul play, officials said.

Niagara County Sheriff's Investigator William Carosella said Taylor is believed to have taken a bus from Toronto to Niagara Falls hours before his body was discovered.

"It is a potential suicide. It was not determined whether he jumped off of a bridge or overpass .... He did not appear to have gone over the falls," Carosella said.

Toronto police said Taylor had a history of depression. A published author, he was employed in the genealogical section of the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne. He was in Toronto to work as a consultant on a 15-episode Canadian History Channel show, "Ancestors in the Attic," Toronto police said.


News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 3, 2006:

Body of missing library genealogist IDíd in N.Y.

By Jeff Wiehe

Investigators have identified the body of an Allen County Public Library genealogist feared dead after he disappeared while filming a documentary in Toronto.

Ronald "Ryan" Taylor, 56, was found Sept. 25 in the lower Niagara River near the New York Power Authority and Devilís Hole State Park in Lewiston, N.Y. According to a Niagara County Sheriffís Department report, Taylor drowned and no suspicious circumstances surround the death. His body remained unidentified until today because medical examiners in Erie County, N.Y., were waiting for dental records to confirm the body was indeed Taylorís.

The day after he vanished, Taylor missed a scheduled flight from Toronto to Fort Wayne. Colleagues found his bags still in the hotel, in the Bloor Street and Avenue Road area of Toronto. Investigators think Taylor might have taken a bus from Toronto to Niagara Falls hours before his body was discovered.

Taylor was born in Oshawa, Ontario, Canada. A Toronto Police Service report released after he disappeared described Taylor as 5 feet, 10 inches tall, 300 pounds with a heavy build. It also said he suffered from Diabetes and depression for which he required daily medication.


Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 3, 2006:

Remains likely to be identified today

By Amanda Iacone

Investigators have yet to identify the remains of a body believed to be that of a Fort Wayne genealogist that were found in the Niagara River in New York last week.

Workers at the Erie County Medical Examinerís Office in Buffalo, N.Y., expected to be able to do so today using dental records, said Phill Carosella, a Niagara County Sheriffís Department investigator.

A preliminary ruling on what caused the manís death is also expected, Carosella said.

Ronald "Ryan" Taylor was reported missing Sept. 24 from the Toronto area where he was visiting to film a genealogy program for television. Taylor is a cataloger for the Allen County Public Library and works in the genealogy department.

The U.S. Coast Guard recovered the remains believed to be his Sept. 25 in the lower gorge of the Niagara River.


Times Colonist, Victoria, British Columbia, October 2, 2006:

A good friend gone too soon, a good man remembered

By Dave Obee

Note: This is a shorter version of the tribute on this website.

The bad news about my friend Ryan Taylor came on Thursday, in an early-morning phone call from Toronto.

Ryan had not been seen since Sunday night. He had missed a flight home to Fort Wayne, Ind., and his luggage was still in his downtown Toronto hotel room.

A few hours later, there was word that a body had been found, and that it had been tentatively identified as Ryan's.

Ryan Taylor was officially a librarian and an author, but more than anything else he was a family historian. He was well-known on Vancouver Island, where he has given seminars in Victoria, Nanaimo and Campbell River.

He was about to become even more famous.

He is one of the hosts of a television series on genealogical research that is scheduled to make its debut on the History Channel on Oct. 18.

Ryan was from Ontario, but worked at the Fort Wayne Allen County Public Library, which has the second-largest genealogical collection in North America.

I met him at a seminar in Moose Jaw, Sask. I was impressed by his depth of knowledge, his friendly attitude, and above all, the enthusiasm he had for the never-ending search for roots.

I asked him if he would consider coming to Vancouver Island to give a seminar.

Yes, he said, but he would prefer to do it in the winter -- giving him a chance to escape the cold of Indiana. Good answer.

That was, as the saying goes, the start of a great friendship.

The Victoria Genealogical Society brought him to the coast for a day-long seminar in 2001, and he wowed the crowd.

In 2004, Ryan returned to British Columbia, and in eight days did seminars in Victoria, Nanaimo, Campbell River and Vernon.

Whenever possible, I acted as his driver when he came to British Columbia.

It was fun to chat with him. He had been working on genealogy since the 1960s, but he had never become jaded. He still could get excited over discoveries.

In 2005, he was approached about taking part in the new television series, Ancestors in the Attic. He was thrilled to pass the screen test, which meant he would be able to share his passion for family history with a wider audience.

That June, he was enthusiastic about the show.

"I am going to TO tonight to film part of the pilot for 'Ancestors in the Attic' -- the story of my solving a family legend, first disproving it and then discovering the truth behind it," he said in an e-mail to me.

"I film in TO on Thursday and then go to Sudbury for more filming with the family whose ancestors are concerned." the e-mail continued. "They are good chums of mine, so we'll have a great time."

I saw Ryan for the last time at the Ontario Genealogical Society's conference in Oshawa in May.

We went to the Outback for dinner, and the conversation went on long after the food was gone.

Other friends managed to take in a movie at the theatre next door while Ryan and I worked on solving all the problems of the genealogical world. He was back in Toronto in July to film more episodes of Ancestors in the Attic.

"It is a really fresh approach to genealogy," he said.

By the middle of September, Ryan and I were completing plans for his trip to British Columbia in February.

Once again, he would be able to escape winter for a few days. There would be seminars in Victoria, Vancouver and Campbell River. We were going to confirm the dates as soon as he finished working on the television show.

On Sept. 19, just before he left his office in Fort Wayne to catch a flight to Toronto, he sent an e-mail to me.

"This will be my last communique," he said. "I am off to TO for the final round of shooting. I am scheduled to return on Monday."

At 10:30 a.m. Monday, the U.S. Coast Guard pulled a body from the Lower Niagara River, near the New York Power Authority intakes.

There was no identification on the body.

At 10 p.m. Wednesday, the Toronto police held a press conference outside the hotel where Ryan had been staying, spreading the word that he was missing.

By Thursday afternoon, the Canadian and American authorities had put their heads together and come up with a tentative solution to both mysteries.

Ryan may be gone, but his good work lives on, through his books, and the things he taught us -- about genealogy and about life.


Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, October 1, 2006:

Family waits for ruling by coroner

By Amanda Iacone


Ronald "Ryan" Taylor had eclectic interests beyond his hobby-turned-career of genealogy.

He enjoyed reading the long, sometimes critical obituaries that run in the London Times. He was a fan of the opera, liked writing and was well-informed on the family relationships among European royalty.

He liked to travel and was invited to speak at conferences across the country and in his homeland of Canada. It was his deep, resonate voice that made it so easy to listen to Taylor speak.

But his anecdotes and experience helped keep his talks entertaining, said Steve Myers, who worked with Taylor in the genealogy department at the Allen County Public Library.

"He was a man of many talents," Myers said.

Taylor, considered an expert on genealogy, was reported missing Sept. 24 from the Toronto area, where he was visiting to film a genealogy program for television. His body is believed to have been recovered Monday from the lower gorge of the Niagara River.

Investigators in Niagara County, N.Y., hope to be able to identify the body on Monday and disclose how the man died.

The Niagara County Coronerís Office didnít receive dental records needed to identify the remains until Saturday, Coroner Russell Jackman II said.

Although an autopsy has been conducted, officials have not ruled how the man died or the manner of death. Sheriff Thomas A. Beilein expects to learn at least the cause of death on Monday. Determining whether the man believed to be Taylor was killed, committed suicide or died by some other means could take longer, he said Saturday.

In the meantime, Beileinís department is investigating the death as a homicide until investigators determine otherwise.

Itís not unusual for law enforcement to find bodies in the Niagara Riverís lower gorge, which is north of the famous waterfalls of the same name, Beilein said. Many of the people found dead in the river committed suicide. A few died in accidents.

Illegal immigrants sometimes try to cross the border by fording the river. But the river is more treacherous than it looks and they are killed while crossing, Beilein said.

Itís not clear how Taylor would have gotten from Toronto to Niagara Falls or why he would have gone to the tourist area. But police canít really begin their investigation until they know for sure who it was that the Coast Guard pulled from the river, Beilein said.

Itís unlikely the person floated from Lake Ontario and into the river, which flows north into the lake toward Toronto. The harbor at Toronto is 20 miles across the lake from the mouth of the Niagara River, Beilein said.

The remains recovered Monday were found in an area of the lower gorge called the Devilís Hole -- a deep section of the river that includes a number of dangerous whirlpools, he said.

Devilís Hole is about one or two miles north of the falls, which are about 12 miles from Lake Ontario, Beilein said.

Taylor was a native of Oshawa, Ontario, and went back to Canada regularly to visit family, said Myers, assistant manager of the genealogy department.

Myers became friends with Taylor in the early 1990s and later convinced Taylor to join the department when a cataloging position became available. Since then, Taylor has continued to write and speak about genealogy, but his interests have turned toward local history.

He contributed to a book about the Kometsí hockey team and a history of Zollner Pistons, Myers said.

Myers has been in touch with Taylorís family in Canada, who are having a hard time waiting for more definitive news about what happened to Taylor.


The Record, Kitchener-Waterloo, September 30, 2006:

Genealogist 'loved the hunt':
Friends, readers mourn passing of Record columnist Ryan Taylor

By Valerie Hill


The man who made genealogy an accessible and delightful romp through our past has died.

Ryan Taylor, 56, longtime columnist for The Record, widely published author, sought-after speaker and a highly respected genealogist, died earlier this week. The cause of death hasn't been determined.

"He was a great guy, very intelligent, very interesting," said Steve Myers, assistant manager of genealogy at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Ind., where both men worked.

The two were close friends and Myers was deeply impressed with his friend's knowledge and openness. "He was conversant on a wide variety of subjects, from literature to opera to history."

Taylor was born in Oshawa, the youngest of three children. Pat Hursti of Nepean said her brother was a caring individual, richly blessed with many friends who were drawn to his sense of humour, his kindness and generosity.

She recalled his interest in genealogy stemmed from a project he took on as a 14-year-old, helping trace the family tree of a friend. When the resulting research was published, Taylor was hooked. He completed undergraduate degrees at Carleton University and the University of Ottawa, where he studied library science.

In 1972, he accepted his first job in a Manitoba library where he stayed until joining the Kitchener Public Library. Historian/librarian Susan Hoffman was delighted when, in 1984, Taylor was transferred to her department in the Grace Schmidt Room.

Hoffman, who is now retired, said Taylor had a special gift for genealogy stemming from his genuine interest in people and their family histories.

"He loved the hunt," she said. "It was the thrill of finding the information and fitting together all the pieces."

Taylor found his dream job in 1994 at the Indiana library, which stores the second-largest collection of genealogical materials in the U.S., but he never completely removed himself from Waterloo Region. He maintained many friendships and continued to be called on as a speaker and researcher.

Judith Jamison-Mitton, of Kitchener, is past president of the Ontario Genealogical Society and a longtime friend of Taylor. "He was a wonderful human being," she said, describing his humility, and the fact that while others might try to foist their knowledge and ideas on everyone else, Taylor never did.

He was the one "rolling up his sleeves, saying 'what can I do to help.' "

Hursti recalls her brother creating "a memory book" for her five-year-old grandson, based on what she had told him over the years. He also voluntarily wrote a history about her nursing graduation class. "He was so thoughtful."

Michael McMahon, executive director of Primitive Films in Toronto, had worked with Taylor for several months on a new 15-episode show, Ancestors in the Attic (to air starting Oct. 18 on the History Channel). "Ryan was an expert . . . an invaluable member of the team," he said.

Taylor was recruited for behind-the-scenes research and to be part of an expert panel as the show delved into mysteries of families' pasts.

McMahon said genealogists like Taylor are "a pretty rare breed at that level." Taylor was in Toronto to work on the show when he died.

A widely published author, Taylor's first Record column, Tracing Your Roots, appeared March 6, 1993. Although he was contracted to write just 12 articles, there was such enthusiastic reader response that he became a regular contributor.

On Monday, Taylor's 406th column, his last, will appear in the Life and Learning section.


Journal Gazette, Fort Wayne, Indiana, September 30, 2006:

Library genealogist feared dead:
Dental records will ID body in river

By Benjamin Lanka


An Allen County Public Library genealogist went missing this week in Toronto, and a body matching his description was found in the Niagara River the next day.

Ronald "Ryan" Taylor, 56, of Fort Wayne has been missing since Sunday night, according to Toronto police. Taylor, a native of Canada, was visiting Toronto for the taping of his TV show, Ancestors in the Attic, according to www.interlinkbookshop.com, a genealogical site.

Russell Jackman II, the Niagara County Coroner in New York state, said the U.S. Coast Guard found the body of a heavyset man in his 50s on Monday in the Niagara River near a section called Devilís Hole.

Jackman said Friday he was waiting on dental records to confirm the manís identity. He said the man had a white beard and was not wearing clothes.

According to Toronto police, Taylor is 300 pounds with a heavy build, wore steel-rimmed glasses and has a full gray beard and moustache. The police reported he suffers from diabetes and depression, which required daily medication.

Jackman said he would release further details after confirming the manís identity and informing his family. The Fort Wayne Police Department had not heard of the case as of Friday morning.

Jeff Krull, director of the Allen County Public Library, said an e-mail was sent to the staff saying a body matching Taylorís description was found Monday. He said Taylorís main focus at the library was cataloging in the genealogy department.

By Friday afternoon, the Interlink Web site had a tribute column to Taylor written by fellow genealogist Dave Obee.

Obee wrote, "The death of Ryan Taylor is a loss for genealogists across Canada and the United States. He touched hearts and minds from coast to coast as a speaker and as an author. In his role as a genealogy librarian at the Allen County library in Fort Wayne, he was able to help genealogists from across the continent."

The Web site states that Taylor was born in Oshawa, Ontario, and educated at Carleton University and the University of Ottawa. He has been a librarian since 1972 and began working in Allen County in 1994. He is on the faculty of the National Institute of Genealogical Studies and is one of the hosts of Ancestors in the Attic, a History Television show scheduled to premiere in Canada in October.


News-Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Indiana, September 30, 2006:

Body may be ACPL staffer:
Genealogist vanished in Toronto on Sunday

By Jeff Wiehe


Colleagues of Ronald "Ryan" Taylor now fear the worst after a body matching his description was found in the Niagara River near Devilís Hole in Lewiston, N.Y., on Monday.

Taylor, 56, an Allen County Public Library genealogist filming a documentary for the History Channel in Toronto, disappeared Sunday. He was supposed to fly back to Fort Wayne on Monday but missed his flight. His bags were found inside a Bloor Street and Avenue Road area hotel where he was staying at the time he disappeared.

According to the Buffalo News, the body of a 6-foot-2-inch, 350-pound man with a full white-and-gray beard and receding hairline was found in the Niagara River the day Taylor was supposed to land in Fort Wayne. The man, who has yet to be identified, was believed to be 45 to 55 years old.

"It describes him to a T," said Louise St. Denis, the director of the National Institute of Genealogical Studies based in Toronto, where Taylor was an instructor. "In our minds, itís him."

Taylor was in Toronto to film a documentary called Ancestors in our Attic for the History Channel. A Toronto Police Service report describes him as white, 5 feet, 10 inches tall and 300 pounds with a gray beard and mustache. The report also said he has diabetes and depression, for which he requires daily medication.

Toronto Police said the Niagara (NY) County coroner had not yet identified the body as of Saturday morning.

St. Denis, who has known Taylor, born in Oshawa, Ontario, for 20 years, said he is an icon in the field of genealogy. She said heís a man with a magnetic personality who can make friends everywhere he goes. St. Denis recounted Taylorís great sense of humor in telling stories that would allow people to relate to him and draw them into lectures about a subject that can be relatively dry.

"He was extremely well respected on both sides of the border," St. Denis said. "We donít have very many icons in this industry, so he will be extremely missed."


City News, Toronto, September 28, 2006:

Toronto Police Looking For Missing Indiana Man

Toronto Police are asking for the public's help in tracking down an Indiana man who has been missing in this city for several days.

Ronald 'Ryan' Taylor was last seen at a hotel near Bloor St. and Avenue Rd. on Sunday night. The 56-year-old was here on business and was scheduled on a return flight Monday. But Taylor didn't make that flight and his luggage is still at the hotel.

Taylor suffers from diabetes and depression, for which he's being treated with medication.

He's described as:

* White
* 5'10", 300 lbs with a heavy build
* Wears steel-rimmed glasses
* Has a full, grey beard and moustache

Anyone who has seen Taylor is asked to call Toronto Police 53 Division at 416-808-5300 or Crime Stoppers at 416-222-TIPS (8477).


Buffalo News, September 27, 2006:

Identity of body found in Niagara River sought

LEWISTON - Authorities have few clues as to the identity of a man whose body was found Monday in the lower Niagara River, near Devil's Hole.

County Coroner Russell Jackman II said Tuesday there was no clothing on the body, which was in the water an estimated six to eight hours. Because of the condition of the body, it was unlikely the man went over the falls, Jackman added.

The man, believed to be 45 to 55 years old, was described as white, 6 foot, 2 inches and 350 pounds, with a full white and gray beard and a receding hairline.


Buffalo News, September 26, 2006:

Man's body recovered near Niagara River intakes

The body of a heavyset white male in his late 40s or early 50s was recovered Monday morning floating in the Niagara River near the New York Power Authority intakes, Niagara County sheriff's deputies reported.

U.S. Coast Guard crews pulled the body from the Lower Niagara River at about 10:30 a.m.

An autopsy is scheduled today in the Erie County medical examiner's office.

The identity of the victim had not been determined as of late Monday.


Photograph of Ryan was taken in Victoria in 2001.

Dave Obee's tribute to Ryan Taylor

Ryan's columns are on the CanGenealogy web site.

AncestryDNA

NewspaperArchive
Search this site with Google:

HOME   |   SPEAKING SCHEDULE   |   TOPICS   |   ABOUT DAVE   |   BOOKS   |   CANGENEALOGY   |  

Copyright 1997-2017 Dave Obee. All Rights Reserved.
Hosted by Islandnet.com