Dr. Dave was a household name

Published 7:31 pm Monday, May 20, 2019

It would be hard to write about unforgettable people that influenced our lives and not write about Dr. Dave Tayloe. Dr. Dave, as he was affectionately called, started his practice in a house on Washington Street close to the old Tayloe Hospital. Bill Litchfield now owns a business that backs up to that lot.

Dr. Dave came from a long line of Tayloes who were all doctors. Names like Dr. John, John Cotton and Josh Tayloe all come to my mind. Dr. Dave’s son, Dave, and his son, David, have continued that family legacy of doctors in their family. Dave was a classmate, and David is my godson, and they both practice medicine in another town and have been very successful and loved by all.

It was a treat as a young boy to be at the Tayloes when Dr. Dave came home for lunch. Most of us saw him at his office but to have lunch with him was like having lunch with a rock star. A bowl of soup and one sandwich was what Mrs. Erin had ready for him every day. Eating light and staying active was the key for Dr. Dave, who never seemed to age or gain a pound.

He was an avid fisherman. Every Thursday he could be found fishing on the Albemarle Sound. After making rounds during the week, when he got home he was either playing tennis or jogging. He also could be found at the Brown Library reading, just to keep his mind sharp.

Some of us saw him at his office after passing Geneva’s exam. He walked into the room, and I have heard him tell my Mom, “Dot, take that boy home. There is nothing wrong with him.” Now I used better language than Dr. Dave did and those who knew him knew he only wanted what was best for all of us.

Dr. Dave loved the time he spent with his family at Hawkins Beach. Every summer, Mrs. Erin would pack up and move to the river for the summer. It was their home away from home. He loved having all of his family together, and he was proud of each one of his children and, later, grandchildren. Nothing made him happier than to have a house full of children. Dave, Sally, Buffa, Ryal and Mark still have family gatherings there today.

He loved his Tar Heels! Once, while visiting my dad in the cardiac ward in Greenville, we heard this loud scream and a word I cannot use. My dad told me not to worry, it was only Dave screaming at the basketball officials while the Heels were playing. He would get mad with the officials whether they won or lost!

Yes, Dr. Dave Tayloe was truly a character who played a major influence in many lives. At a time when doctors made house calls, calling Dr. Dave assured parents and children that all would be well. He was not only our doctor but our friend, and I am glad he was a part of my life. Thanks for the many house calls you made to so many, Dr. Dave. Your wisdom and advice was always welcomed. You are truly missed by us all. Those are big shoes to fill, but Dave and David are continuing his legacy!

They were the best of times with the best of friends and in the best of places, Washington, NC!

— Harold Jr.

Harold Robinson Jr. is a native of Washington.