Tribute to salt-of-earth husband

Headshot of Shannon Smith
Shannon SmithAlbany Advertiser
Email Shannon Smith
Bevan and Maria Taylor.
Camera IconBevan and Maria Taylor. Credit: Supplied

The loving wife of a Lake Grace man who died in a hang-glider crash has penned a heart-wrenching tribute to her “beautiful husband” and the father of her four children.

Bevan Taylor, 50, was practising for the WA Hang Gliding Championships when his hang-glider crashed into a paddock 50km east of Merredin on Saturday.

He died at the scene.

His wife, Maria, told the Advertiser he was a “salt-of-the-earth” man who had loved her “so perfectly”.

“On Saturday my beautiful husband of nearly 29 years and father to our four children was tragically killed in a hang-gliding accident in Westonia,” she said.

“We know he was doing something he loved, where he found peace and freedom among like-minded people, but still, we are just shattered.

“He loved us, his extended family, his many friends, the community of Lake Grace, his dogs and his beloved West Coast Eagles.

“He had a crazy and often inappropriate sense of humour, a penchant for loud shirts, a sense of adventure, big handshake, booming laugh and a hug that wrapped around us and made us feel safe.

“His sparkling blue eyes spoke of love, kindness and adventure, with a hint of mischief.

“He was salt-of-the-earth.

“A man of integrity.”

She said Mr Taylor, who called himself a “busted-arse” farmer, had battled depression and worked hard to keep the family afloat.

“Bevan always said if he could be any animal that he would be an eagle, so it was fitting when visiting the site of the accident that as we turned our eyes to the heavens, a wedge-tailed soared high above us,” Ms Taylor said.

“I like to think he was sending me a sign.

“We miss him already and can’t begin to imagine what our lives are going to look like without our anchor.

“My darling Bevan, Hub, Mr Whiskers, for 32 years I have loved you with every fibre of my being, every beat of my heart.

“You taught me so much and loved me so perfectly. You carried me, cared for me and shared with me your thoughts, dreams, hopes and fears.

“Thank you for taking my hand and walking through life with me.

“I will cherish every minute of our time together, our beautiful family, and our many adventures around Australia and overseas.

“Catch that thermal and fly like an eagle, my darling Bevan.” She said the family would like to thank everyone for their beautiful messages of sympathy and support, including the Hang Gliding Association of WA for its guidance and friendship at this very difficult time.

Merredin police, in conjunction with the Hang Gliding Federation of Australia, will conduct an investigation into the cause of the crash and a report will be prepared for the Coroner.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails