Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Love of Music Runs in Our Family

Recently I ran into this old news article about my maternal grandfather, Steen Parker, playing a piano solo at the old brick church in Perkins Township. The article appeared in the Sandusky Star Journal of February 20, 1922. Sadly, Grandpa Steen died before I was born. I would so loved to have heard him play the piano!

Mom told me stories of how her Great Grandpa Thomas F. Larkins used to play The Sidewalks of New York on the piano for the grandkids, when Mom lived at his home on Shelby Street in Sandusky. Mom grew up to be the volunteer choir director for a children's choir at Grace Lutheran Church in Castalia, Ohio for many years. My brother Paul sang at my wedding, and he had the lead in "Paint Your Wagon" in the school play when he was in high school at Margaretta. Baby sister Kellie played the Sousaphone both in high school and in college! My brother Matt sang at weddings for many, many years. He often was featured as a soloist in the Congregational Church Choir. One of my favorites was You Raise Me Up.

Though I am not so skilled in the field of music, I did take piano lessons for ten years, and I thoroughly enjoyed the High School Band, where I played the alto clarinet. While I do not know so many musical stories about my dad's side of the family, I will never forget him singing I've Been Working on the Railroad, during road trips, or hearing polkas every time I went to visit Grandma Emma Yeager Orshoski on Sunday afternoons in Bay Bridge!

My daughters used to perform in the Show Choir when they were in high school, and I so enjoyed hearing Melanie sing in a choral ensemble during her years at Mount Vernon Nazarene College (now Mount Vernon Nazarene University.) Currently the song I am most enjoying is All God's Creatures God a Place in the Choir, seen here on YouTube. This song reminds me that everyone in a large family, no matter how old or young, or how rich or poor, has something to add! How I miss Mom's stories about the family!

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