Being chauffeured in a decorated car for five or six blocks is not really an adequate way for two men to be recognized for their lifetimes of service to our community. But it is, at the very least, a way to show Don Funk and Ed Taylor that we do appreciate all that they have done for Vandalia.
Funk and Taylor will serve as the grand marshals for the Vandalia Lions Club’s Halloween parade next Thursday evening. It will be the first time in several decades that they won’t have to be helping to pull off one of the largest Halloween parades in Illinois.
These two men have helped to organize the parade for several decades, and they are charter members of the club’s formal parade committee.
But their service to the community goes beyond that. As members of the Lions, Funk and Taylor have been involved in the club’s various other projects, including those which help the sight- and hearing-impaired.
And beyond that, both have been successful in business and industry, which can be attributed to a strong work ethic that they acquired as children, Funk working as a paper boy and an usher at Liberty Theater, and Taylor at the local dairy.
“Between the dairy and working for my dad (in his construction business),” Taylor said, “I was always doing something.”
Funk went on to become the manager of the local Coca-Cola and Benner-Nawman plants, and Taylor worked in the family construction business, started a concrete business and became a partner in the corporation that built the Days Inn (now the Ramada Inn Ltd.).
The youth of today could learn a lesson from these two men; they are indeed proof that hard work translates into success. It also translates into a lifetime of service.
We’d like you to remember the contributions of Don Funk and Ed Taylor as you see them ride in the parade next Thursday, and recognize them with resounding applause.