On November 1, 1854, John Taini was born in Rezzato, Italy (near Brescia) to Gerolamo and Lucia Prandelli Taini. John later became a stonemason there, and an American contractor recruited him and his partner, G.B. Cassinelli, to build structures in New York. Although those projects fell through, Taini and Cassinelli worked for the railroads and then for the U.S. Army constructing stone buildings at Fort Clark in Brackettville, Texas. Like many hired to work at Fort Clark, Taini and Cassinelli later moved to Del Rio, where many other Italians immigrated in the 1880s.
Family tradition holds that Taini returned to Italy in 1889 to wed Erminia Gerola (1874-1955). The couple reared two daughters, Annie and Lucy. Taini maintained his partnership with Cassinelli, building several structures, as well as buying and selling real estate in the Del Rio area. As a stonemason, Taini worked as a sub-contractor on the Val Verde County Courthouse in 1885. Other projects at that time included Southern Pacific Railroad employee housing, Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Club Café, the 1904 Methodist church building and numerous residences. Taini's partnership with Cassinelli dissolved by 1904, but he continued working on construction projects. He won multiple county and city contracts, including work on the county jail, bridges, canal and creek
improvements, and two dams across San Felipe Creek. Unfortunately, many of Taini's structures were damaged or razed as a result of a 1998 flood.
In addition to Taini's architectural contributions, he was also a leader in the Del Rio community. He donated land for civic improvements and served as an election judge and on the board of directors of the Italian Catholic Cemetery, now part of Sacred Heart Cemetery, where he was buried in 1929.