Saturday, April 09, 2005

Good-bye, Professor Taffs...

Another of my beloved professors has died. I just read in my Albion alumni magazine that Tony Taffs, my freshman english professor, who was also one of our highly accomplished music professors (I double-majored in econ and music) died in February and the memorial service was on campus last night. I thought I was a fairly decent writer until I took freshman english from Professor Taffs. He was a quiet man with an imposing red pencil, which is how I knew from day one that I still had a lot to learn about writing well. I had the good fortune of joining the Episcopal Church where Tony was the choir director, and so had the opportunity to make music with him. We were not an imposing choir, but Tony encouraged us to sing with joy and always made us laugh. Despite being the only college student, he and his wife, Jean, always made me feel welcome. Twenty years later, in our on-going Christmas card exchange, his most recent note to me was how beautiful my children looked. It is because of professors like Al Bolitho, and those who have now gone before us to make heavenly music: David Strickler, Jackie Maag, and now Tony Taffs, that I am now back in school, hoping to carry on their legacy of teaching and caring.


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