David Taylor passed away on Thursday February 27 at 14.15 hrs. (UK time). I never met Dave and only spoke to him a few times. The first time was after I came across the ONI website that he created. I became curious and so in 2013 sent him an email and later spoke with him on the phone. He was curious about Al Leffler. I did some research, found Al's phone number and gave him a call. I then sent Dave and email of my contact with Al which you can find in the Contacts page of this website. I also sent him photos and a narrative of my time with ONI in Belize and the Arabian Gulf '64 -'67 which he posted on the Photos page.
I kept in touch with Dave periodically by email, a few times by phone and purchased his book "A Suitcase Full Of Dreams" from him directly which I read with great interest. However in August of 2019 I received a troubling email from Dave asking for someone to take over the ONI website as he was facing serious health problems. I contacted Dave and told him that I would be glad to help as I had some fleeting experience with website design.
I worked with Dave to procure the addresses and passwords necessary to access and maintain the site but it turned out that there were innumerable problems with taking it over completely. I could not take over ownership because the website is located in the UK and I live in the US. It also was not feasible to transfer the website to a US hosting service without disrupting Dave's access to his email and other serious obstacles. In the end I simply changed the billing of the service to my CC while keeping Dave as the registered owner.
I then spent the next two months working on the site, standardizing fonts for readability and correcting many other formatting problems. While the site is not perfect, Dave seemed pleased with my work. I last heard from Dave on January 19 when I sent him an email asking whether he was receiving my update notices and gently inquired about his health. He replied "Hi Jesse, Yes I am receiving everything Ok, you are doing a grand job, thanks. As far as my health is concerned I am not doing too well at all, so am happy that we got everything sorted when we did. Keep up the good work."
Even though I did not know Dave very well I admire him for commemorating via this website those that worked for and with ONI, a forum in which stories of adventure all over the world abound. I encourage all those who knew Dave better than I to send me your remembrances of him at email@example.com so they can be posted on this website to be shared with the larger ONI community.
Jesse Lerma, February 29, 2020
A MESSAGE FROM DAVID TAYLOR, AUGUST 23, 2019
Hello all. Many thanks for all your emails regarding my medical situation, but my demise would appear to be not in the near future, going by the way I feel at present. Despite this fact, and to ensure the continued existence of this website, I have taken the opportunity of transferring control of the site to Jesse Lerma (contact: firstname.lastname@example.org), the only person to take up my request.
Although only with
ONI for a few years he is committed to the
memory of those who worked for the company and
to preserve the stories of their many
adventures around the world. Jesse is
not a professional software developer but he
is familiar with website design etc - as are
many others - and was the only person to offer
his services, others still being far to busy
From now on,
all emails regarding
the site should be addressed to Jesse, who has already spent some time
tidying things up as you may
notice. Jesse is also the new
sponsor of the site, and we offer grateful
thanks to Geoff Metcalfe for the many years
of his sponsorship.
Note that you can still reach me for personal matters at email@example.com. Please keep in touch!
Most of you may not know me as I only worked for ONI for a few years, '64 - '67. On the other hand I feel that those years shaped the rest of my life. I had many adventures and met and worked with an iconic cast of characters from different countries and cultures. While with ONI I also met Claudette, my wife of over 50 years in Doha, Qatar. I was introduced to her by Don Darroch of GSI and our romance blossomed through the help of ONI party chief Louie Conner.
I am now 76 years old, 13 years retired from a career as an electronics engineer. During my engineering career I continued to travel for business and pleasure all over the world (though with more comfortable accommodations than I was exposed to while with ONI). Once a Doodlebugger the dye is cast, forever wondering what lies beyond the next horizon.
I will do my best to maintain the website and to provide updates from time to time as new content is received but be aware that my familiarity with those who worked for ONI is very limited and I will not be able to provide additional context as David has done over the years. If you would like to learn more about my time with ONI please check out my page in the "Photos" section of the website.
NOTICES FROM DAVID TAYLOR
****HOW THIS WEBSITE
****HANS KARLSON'S "AROUND THE WORLD ON TWO WHEELS" ****
****DAVID TAYLOR'S "THE FIRST HELICOPTER BOYS"**** \