In Memory of Taylor Belt (1923-2011)

This edition of the Wyoming Law Review is dedicated to the memory of Taylor Belt, a Wyoming-grown lawyer who passed away in 2011 and left more than $45,000 to the Wyoming State Bar. A significant portion of Mr. Belt’s bequest, $13,000, is being used to fund the publication of this edition.

Mr. Belt enjoyed a remarkably diverse, accomplished, and interesting life. He was born in La Junta, Colorado on June 17, 1923. After graduating from Cheyenne Central High School in 1941, Mr. Belt served as a fighter pilot in World War II. He returned to the University of Wyoming and received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1948. Once again selflessly answering his nation’s call, Mr. Belt flew reconnaissance missions over Korea. After his active military service, Mr. Belt earned his law degree from the University of Wyoming College of Law in 1954.

Upon graduating from the College of Law, Mr. Belt embarked on a decades long career working as a patent lawyer for the United States Government. He retired in Oakland, California, where thereafter he spent many years serving his community and church. Mr. Belt returned to Wyoming in 2009 and passed away on April 1, 2011.

Unfortunately, the Wyoming State Bar and the Wyoming Law Review Editorial Board know less about Mr. Belt than we would wish. His obituary in the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle was only eight sentences long. It reveals that his wife of sixty-six years, LaDean, preceded him in death. He had no children. He was survived by a sister. He was a churchgoer, a Mason, and a lifetime member of the VFW. We do not, and may never, know why Mr. Belt chose to leave such a generous bequest to the Wyoming State Bar.

Whatever the reason for Mr. Belt’s generosity, we hope he would approve of the admirable causes his gift has helped to fund. In addition to supporting this edition of the Wyoming Law Review, some of the funds from Mr. Belt’s bequest have been paid into a scholarship fund to help deserving students at the University of Wyoming College of Law. The balance will fund scholarships for Wyoming lawyers interested in attending Wyoming State Bar-sponsored events.

By any measure, Mr. Belt’s life of service and generosity will help inspire the next generation of Wyoming lawyers. The Wyoming State Bar and the Editorial Board humbly thank Mr. Taylor Belt.



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