Thursday, June 16, 2005

Stanley McKee passed away

Wednesday's Review Atlas Obituaries listed the death of Mr. Stanley N. McKee. The print copy of the Daily Review Atlas (DRA) tells us that Mr. McKee was born Feb. 2, 1940, in Macomb, IL, and attended the local schools. He graduated from Western IL University with a major in voice and a minor in piano, received his B.S. in Education in 1965, and his M.S. in Education in 1971 (just in time for him to teach me and my cohorts). He was a member of the National Education Associaton, the IL Education Association, and a number of local associations. According to the DRA, "[h]e enjoyed music, musical theater, antiques and gardening."

When I was a kid, I thought he was... quirky for an old guy. He was one of the handful of men in this small, conservative town, who showed no inclination to marry. Naturally, this led to gossip. I had no clue what the tongue wagglers meant, and didn't really care, except that it might have hurt him and hurt his position as a fine teacher. As far as I was concerned, Mr. McKee was nice and smart, and he taught us some neat songs that I continue to sing even today; that was all that was important.

Most people outside Monmouth will give very few hoots, having never encountered the man, but he was a music teacher here for many long years. You don't often think about the impact of a single person on you, in your formative years, but he was one of the amazing sort who didn't quash children's love for song.

The community will miss him.

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