Denise was born in 1958 and grew up in Taylor, Michigan. She graduated from Taylor Center High School in 1976 and went on to earn a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from Eastern Michigan University in 1980. She married her husband Bill that year, and they went on to raise their sons Chase and Martin together on their farm in Wallace, Michigan. On their farm, they raised poultry, cattle, and various other small livestock for over 30 years together before moving to Escanaba in 2020.
Denise had a love for all things nature – especially gardening, birds, and rocks. Throughout her college years, she collected over 100 houseplants that she housed and cared for at her mother’s home. Her passion for plants led to her curating gardens full of native Michigan plants. Her love for gardening and native plants also led to her continuing a Taylor family tradition of bringing in and propagating native wildflowers near her house. Denise’s birding hobby led to her becoming one of the founding members of the Chappee Rapids Audubon Society in Menominee, MI and Marinette, WI. She wrote the column “Field Notes” for the society’s newsletter and participated in numerous Christmas Bird Counts. She and her husband Bill also founded the Hayward Lakes Christmas Bird Count. She was one of the leading guides in the Menominee Historical Society / Chappee Rapids Audubon local history field trips for fourth grade classes at the Chappee-Webber Learning Center. She was also a Breeding Bird Survey Observer for the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
Denise was a 6 year breast cancer survivor and she held an endless appreciation for the natural world surrounding her. She was compassionate and respectful towards all life and cared immensely for those she was close to. Her volunteer work was selfless and purely for the sake of educating others on the things she knew and loved. She will be missed enormously.”
A celebration of life is planned for later in the spring. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society or an environmental organization of your choosing.
The Taylor family is being assisted by the Skradski Family Funeral Home in Escanaba.