Annual food drive dedicated to Taylor

Sharon Null's voice was overcome with emotion, trying to describe the kind of person her sister-in-law, Nancy Taylor, was.

"I was only blessed with knowing her eight years," Null said, emotion etched in her voice. "It wasn't nearly enough. She was like a big sister to me."

Malinda Montgormery: Clovis Media Inc.

Albertsons' employee Chad Archuelta checks places a donation into a collection box at the Clovis store for VistaCare Hospice's annual food drive. The drive is being dedicated to Nancy Taylor, the longtime director of the Eastern New Mexico Food Bank who died earlier this month.

Null works for VistaCare Hospice in Clovis as the manager of volunteer services.

The hospice is conducting its annual food drive, which is being dedicated to Taylor, the executive director of the Food Bank of Eastern New Mexico, who died earlier this month.

"I couldn't look at them and they couldn't look at me," Null said of her co-workers concerning the day Taylor died. "It's been a hard thing for me. It means the world to me that my co-workers think so much of her."

Taylor was an inspiration to many people in local eastern New Mexico communities, including VistaCare, according to VistaCare executive director Annette Olson.

"We do it every year but this year, the timing of Nancy passing away earlier this month, just gives us an even more personal connection with it," Olson said. "Those are big shoes to fill. It is very important to our team to try to do as much as we can to make Nancy's legacy live on."

Olson said more than 1,200 pounds of food was collected last year during VistaCare's food drive, which donates all proceeds to the food bank.

"We are from this community and we live in this community and it's part of who we are, so supporting the community in other ways than just through medical care makes it a better place to live," Olson said of the hospice's passion for holding the annual food drive.

Null said providing food to the hungry was such a large part of Taylor's life that she knows her sister-in-law would be honored the food drive is being dedicated to her.

"It's amazing how much of the community is involved in all of this (food collections)," Null said. "She (Taylor) was always looking for another way to help her community. And after watching her, you couldn't say no. If she could dedicate that much time and effort to everything she did, you just couldn't say no to her."

Null said Taylor went above and beyond in everything she did, which carried beyond giving food to those in need.

Null said Taylor's generosity was limitless.

"It went so much further than just feeding people," Null said. "She was always looking for further ways to help. She was a great sister-in-law. She just brought me in so quickly and took me under her wing. She was just always out there, ready to adopt another child or a sister. She never met a stranger."

Olson said VistaCare staff are considering the possibility of holding a small dedication ceremony, honoring Taylor, after the drive ends on Friday.

"People who met her could not believe she was 70 years old," Null said of Taylor. "She was very classy and intelligent and didn't mind rolling up her sleeves."

Area residents wishing to donate non-perishable food items to the drive, can drop donations off at one of these locations in Clovis:

• Albertsons

• S&S Super Market,

• Stancell's Thriftway

• Clovis Quick Care

Contact: 769-5679

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