In Memory of John C. Wacker
John Wacker, 80, passed away on April 23, 2017. John was born in Great Falls, Montana. He held both his Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in physics from Washington State University. After graduation, John was recruited by Honeywell and moved to Minneapolis, MN where he met his wife Kathleen. In 1971 the family moved to Florida where his projects within Honeywell’s avionics division included development of steering and navigation systems for the F117-A stealth fighter. Since his retirement in 1999, John worked for H&R Block during tax season, volunteered at his beloved church, Grace Lutheran of Clearwater. John has been a member of the Suncoast Symphony Orchestra for 33 years, starting as a Tuba player and eventually switching to French Horn. John was also a Board Member for the orchestra, serving as Treasurer. John is survived by his wife, Kathleen; his daughter, Karen; sons, Chris and Andrew; and grandsons, Sean, Colin, Aaron, and Alex. John is also survived by his sister, Elaine.
In Memory of Rodney J. Bradley
Rod Bradley, 73, passed away gently Tuesday, April 19, 2016 and ended his valiant and heroic struggle of nearly eight years with esophageal cancer. Rod grew up in Chesterland, OH a graduate of West Geauga High School. He graduated with a Ph.D from The Ohio State University and was a life-long Buckeye fan and alumnae supporter. Rod, with his wife Linda and son Dan, moved to Florida in 1979 to enjoy the sunny, warmer climate and water sports. Rod was a talented and passionate classical musician and a long-term member of The Suncoast Symphony Orchestra. The family wishes to express our deepest regards to those symphony members who willingly give their cherished hours to bring music to the community. We also wish to especially thank the Moffit team of doctors who participated in affording Rod a truly great quality of life for such a long time. A loving look-back for family and friends will be held at Heritage United Methodist Church at Landmark and 580 Saturday, April 30, at 3:30 pm. Donations to The Suncoast Symphony would be much appreciated.
In Memory of Juliana Moss
Juliana Moss, one of our beloved orchestra co-founders, has passed away.
Since its inception in 1984 as the Clearwater Symphony Orchestra, Juliana has performed in our violin section and held the position of Concertmaster for many years. For the last few years Juliana has also performed in our viola section.
Born in Michigan, Juliana Moss studied piano and violin as a child. At age 13, she also began vocal study.
Her college music degree was a double major in violin and voice, with a double minor in piano and organ. Later, she added the viola to her professional portfolio.
She soon discovered that her most rewarding field was teaching. She has been a private music instructor for over 50 years, 20 of which she also taught chorus, orchestra and general music education in schools.
As rewarding as teaching is, she found most fulfillment in her own musical endeavors. She was a church musician since her teenage years and even played violin in her father's orchestra in Grand Rapids.
Moving south in 1956, she served as organist and choir director for many churches in the Tampa Bay area and led the Suncoast String Quartet for 23 years.
In 1957, she joined a few of our present orchestra's more seasoned musicians as violinist in the original Clearwater Symphony Orchestra and supported reformation of the orchestra in the 1980's. Juliana was also very supportive when the orchestra was renamed The Suncoast Symphony Orchestra.
Besides directing and playing, she continued her vocal work. Not only has she performed vocal selections with our orchestra Juliana has also sung principal roles in oratorios and in seventeen operas and operettas throughout the state of Florida, including the role of Marthe opposite Jerome Hines in a Tampa production of Faust in 1977.
Throughout the years, Juliana has played in many professional and volunteer orchestras, but she especially loved the Suncoast Symphony Orchestra because it gave her the opportunity to play classical music and share her love of it with other musicians and concert attendees. We will miss her.
In Memory of Telleta Bourne Atwell
Telleta Bourne Atwell, one of our beloved orchestra co-founders, died at her Dunedin home on Saturday afternoon, Feb. 28, 2015. She was in her 106th year of a meaningful life. A native of Rome, NY, Telleta was an accomplished musician playing violin for 100 years. A distinguished music educator, she studied at Fredonia Normal School and received Bachelors and Masters degrees in Music from Syracuse University. Telleta taught music for well over 30 years, mostly in Catskills and Weschester County. Her school orchestras played at both the 1939 and the 1964 Worlds Fairs in New York City. Along with her musical career, she also started a musical instrument rental business in New York and managed real estate in Florida. These endeavors were also successful.
Since its inception in 1984 as the Clearwater Symphony Orchestra, Telleta has performed in our violin section and held the position of Concertmaster from 1987 to 1994. Telleta has also been an active member of the board of directors since 1984 until her official retirement in 2004.
Mrs. Atwell is a native of Rome, New York, and now resides in north Pinellas County. Telleta also enjoys her New York summer home on Oneida Lake. She exemplifies a life driven and enhanced by music. Beginning violin at age 7, her talent has spanned some eight decades. This love of music earned her both bachelor's and master's degrees from Syracuse University. Then, for 32 years, she taught instrumental music and inspired countless students at schools in the Catskills and Westchester County.
A highlight of her teaching career was the honor of bringing two of her bands to both the 1939 and 1964 World's Fair in New York City. In fact, the 1964 band opened the New York State Pavilion with then Governor Nelson Rockefeller. Telleta was also a violinist with the Utica and Syracuse Symphony Orchestras.
Her involvement with music indicates varied interests. Along with teaching, she organized several dance bands, chamber music groups and is a regular at Fiddlers' gatherings.
Telleta Atwell is proud to say that she is a fiddler. In 1983, she was inducted into the New York State Fiddler’s Hall of Fame. In 1990 she extended her recognition by being inducted into the North American Fiddler’s Hall of Fame, an organization that recognizes outstanding fiddlers throughout North America. Ms. Atwell was the overwhelming favorite as the 1990 inductee.
In Memory of Robert Moler, Sr.
Robert Moler, Sr., 89, of Dunedin, passed away peacefully on Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015 surrounded by his family. He is survived by his loving wife of 47 years, Barbara; and his children, Linda (Anthony), Rob (Pat), Jeff (Carmen), Jennifer (J.C.) and grandchildren, Haley, Grant, Reid and Clark. Bob was born in Pittsburg, PA and was an accomplished clarinet and saxophone player. He organized a dance band called "The Bobby Bruce". He enlisted in the Army Air Corps, was a fighter pilot in WWII and ultimately retired from service after 31 years in the reserves. After WWII, he graduated in the first co-ed class from FSU in 1949. He moved to St. Petersburg where he enjoyed several successful careers in insurance, investment brokerage and retired from the county as a tax appraiser. After six months of retirement, he co-owned a private school with his son, Rob for several years. Throughout his life and in retirement, he pursued many hobbies. His continued love of aviation resulted in him building an experimental plane with a friend. Later he restored a vintage WWII 1942 Stearman biplane, which took first place in the classic division at The Annual EAA event in Oshkosh, WI. Bob was part of a small group that founded the Annual Sun 'n Fun Fly-In located in Lakeland. He also enjoyed volunteering as a pilot for the Angel Flight organization. His love of cars lead to him restoring 13 classic mustangs as well as building two kit cars. His childhood love of model trains resulted in a collection that filled an entire room. He was a part of this country's Greatest Generation and will be missed by all that knew him.
Bob was a Board Member for the Suncoast Symphony Orchestra since 1995.
In Memory of Dave Powers
Dave Powers passed away on October 23, 2014. His 50-year musical journey began with the trombone in middle school in 1963. Over the ensuing years, Dave played with numerous concert bands, wind ensembles, orchestras and pit bands for many musical productions. He performed as a soloist on many occasions. He formed the Eastern Shore Brass Quintet in 1981, a group that was active for several years playing for a variety of venues from Washington, DC, throughout the Eastern Shore of Maryland and into Virginia. In 1983, he spent the entire summer playing under the baton of internationally-known conductor, Dr. Fredrick Fennell. Other groups Dave played with include:
- Salisbury Concert Band - Salisbury, Maryland
- Salisbury State College Jazz Band - Salisbury, Maryland
- Eastern Shore Brass Quintet - Founder - Salisbury, Maryland
- Eastern Shore Symphony - Ocean City, Maryland
- Dunedin Concert Band - Dunedin, Florida
- St. Petersburg Community Band - St. Petersburg, Florida
- Clearwater Concert Band - Clearwater, Florida
- Summit Orchestra And Singers - Clearwater, Florida
- Pinellas Trombone Choir - Clearwater, Florida
- Suncoast Symphony Orchestra - Clearwater, Florida
- Newport-Ritchie Symphony Orchestra - Newport-Ritchie, Florida
- United Methodists Church Orchestra - Indian Rocks, Florida
- Pinellas Brass Quintet - Founder - Palm Harbor, Florida
- Pinellas Wind Ensemble - Founder - Clearwater, Florida
- DCB Brass Quintet - Founder - Dunedin, Florida
Anyone interested in making a donation to the Suncoast Symphony Orchestra in memory of Dave, we do accept PayPal and a donation can be made on Dave's behalf from our Donation page, just type Dave's name into the text box that says "Donation For: (optional)".
In Memory of Art Perkins
Arthur Perkins, 91, passed away on April 22, 2013. He was born in Stratford, CT on January 11, 1922 and settled with his family in Milford, CT attending the Milford Public Schools. After graduating from Milford High School in 1940, he attended the University of Connecticut for two years. With the decision to make music his career and serve in the U.S. Navy as well, he was enrolled in the Navy Music School in San Diego, CA. There he had instruction and training both in concert and dance band performance.
From California, he was assigned in a band to the U.S.S. Saratoga aircraft carrier for the duration of the war. Upon discharge from the service, he completed his work at Danbury State Teacher's College in Connecticut earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Education and graduating in 1951.
During the beginning of his thirty years teaching instrumental music in Torrington, CT, he completed his Master of Arts degree at Columbia University in New York City.
After retiring he moved to Dunedin. Art enjoyed many years of performing with musical organizations. Arthur is survived by his beloved wife, Barbara; two sons, Curtis of Middletown, OH and Randall of Mena, AR; 3 grandchildren; and 1 great-grandchild. (Published in the Tampa Bay Times on April 24, 2013)
Art was one of the Suncoast Symphony co-founders, charter musician and board member. Since its inception in 1984 as the Clearwater Symphony Orchestra, Art has unselfishly devoted his energy as section leader, musician, librarian and board member. We will all miss Art!
In Memory of Michael Grogg
Michael began playing piano and tuba in the 4th grade, and over the years continued to pick up new instruments, to include string bass, xylophone, vibraphone and other percussion instruments, as well as all sizes of recorders and voice.
Michael was active throughout high school in music and won numerous awards for his playing. After graduation from high school, he enlisted in the US Army, and served one combat tour of duty in South Vietnam. After returning he joined the Army National Guard, and was Tuba Section Leader of the 38th Division Army Band. He was also Supply Sergeant in charge of musical instruments for the band, and served as assistant director.
He graduated from Ball State University with a BS degree in Music Education as an Area Music Major, with an instrumental major in Tuba, and with minors in both String Bass and Voice. While attending Ball State, Michael studied tuba with J. Lesley Varner and Dr. Barton Cummings. Additional study was with Harvey Phillips at the Indiana University School of Music. After graduating he taught with the Ft. Wayne Community Schools and played with the Ft. Wayne Symphony.
After leaving the university, Michael lived in the Cleveland, Ohio area and worked in Law Enforcement. Michael moved to Florida in 1990 and has been active in many local music groups since then, including the Pinellas Park Community Orchestra, Summit Orchestra & Singers, the Suncoast Symphony Orchestra, and the Clearwater Community Band just to name a few.
Michael has also been active with a number of brass quintets and other brass ensembles, most recently playing tuba in the DCB Brass Quintet. He helped with the premier performance of 'TubaChristmas' in Tallahassee FL in 1999, and helped with the organization and the promotion of the first St. Petersburg TubaChristmas.
Anyone interested in making a donation to the Suncoast Symphony Orchestra in memory of Michael, we do accept PayPal and a donation can be made from our Donation page.
The members of the Suncoast Symphony Orchestra and its Board of Directors wish Michael a fond farewell, we will miss him!