A Tribute To Zane Taylor-Smoke Signals

by Coach Darrell Lewis

I am deeply saddened by the untimely passing of a football friend of mine, Quarterback Zane Taylor. I am just one of his many fans and would like to try to write this tribute to Zane. As I watched and wrote about Zane his senior year on the football field, he became a “larger than life character” who brought a fantastic energy and commitment to the Indian football team. I have many fond memories of his smile, politeness, and toughness. He was an absolute joy to cover and write about. Zane wore #2 but he was number 1 in my mind as I watched him play his senior year. Zane was a wide receiver until his senior year and he had never taken a snap until his senior year. It didn’t take Zane long to show that he “could do all things.” He quickly took over the leadership of the Indians and led them to their first playoff win in 19 years. He was really proud of that gold football. In his opening game, Zane showed what he was made of as he rushed 22 times for 200 yards, with 2 rushing TDs and 2 passing TDs in a 29-18 win over Como-Picton. In the next game against Scurry-Rosser, Zane picked up where he had left off, rushing 26 times for 134 yards, one rushing TD and one passing TD. Zane threw a touchdown pass with 14 seconds left in the contest to win 27-20. Zane pointed out to me that “we work on the 2 minute offense everyday and we worked it to perfection tonight. All in a day's work.” Zane rushed for 152 yards, scoring 3 TDs and had a TD pass in a win over Quitman. In his game of a lifetime against Frankston, Zane rushed 24 times for 348 yards and 3 TDs. That may be a rushing yardages record for the Indians. Zane went on to rush for 107 yards in the “mud bowl” in a 3-2 win over Alba-Golden and another 100 yard rushing night against Arp. Zane was instrumental in leading the Indians to their first playoff win in 19 years. Zane toted the mail 17 times for 150 yards and passed for 86 yards in leading the Indians to a 23-0 Bi-District Championship over Blue Ridge.

Zane finished his great senior year as a proven leader, rushing over 1300 yards. Those were very tough yards for a 145 pound quarterback. Zane took lots of big hits and always got up. After he rushed for 348 yards against Frankston, I used the term “tough cookie” in describing Zane Taylor. “A “tough cookie” is someone with just the right mix of attitude and strength - one who doesn’t crumble under pressure, a fighter who is too busy kicking butt to sit down with pain, but keeps on fighting, a person who doesn’t always ask for support but has lots of friends who would do anything to help.” Every time I talked with him after that game, I told him that he was a “tough cookie.” He was an absolute pleasure to watch and write about. Zane will be missed but not forgotten. My heart is broken. I want to send my condolences to his family, friends and teammates of Zane. Philippians 1:3