THIS EVENING I WENT OUT TO PADDLE THE CANOE for an hour or so as I often do. Kathy said she would take that time to practice her singing, for an upcoming musical theater production she may audition for. While paddling I had time to reflect on all the remarkable talents this lovely lady has, and all the wonderful artistic/musical accomplishments she has achieved. Without the advantages of being raised in an academic, musical family as I was—rather growing up on a farm, with loving parents who arranged piano lessons from a local lady, and with help from a musically inclined nun, Kathy went off to college to study music. From there she was on her way and on her own.
There have been some lively discussions over the years as to who was the top “Music Theory” student in our class—Kathy or me. But I will now give the nod to her. She studied voice and piano—a double major, was the top accompanist for choir and soloists and ensembles, was president of the music sorority, drew straight A’s and performed two Senior Recitals. I… didn’t do quite as well. But I was smart enough to fall in love with her, and after three years she finally returned the favor.
We’ve now been married 48 years this May, and along with raising two great sons and moving on to grandchildren and all that family life entails, Kathy has remained true to her musical and artistic passions. An extraordinary accompanist, a warm and generous piano teacher and public school educator who has enriched the lives of hundreds of students, a fine pianist, a wonderful soprano singer, and a delightful actress who has appeared in dozens of theater productions through the years, she has made the most of those childhood piano lessons and church solos. And I have been lucky to often have a front row seat. And I was reflecting proudly on all of that as I paddled my canoe.
Congratulations on everything, Kathy Ann. I love you.