William O. Linzey
William O. LInzey
William O. Linzey died on July 21, 2003 at a local hospital. He was born in Albany, N.Y. to the late Anson O. and Cecile Linzey.
Mr. Linzey was a graduate of Syracuse University. He will be remembered as a band director, teacher, administrator, musician, golfer and friend. Bill was retired from Norfolk Public Schools.
He performed professionally with the U.S. Military Academy Band, local symphonies, the Tidewater Winds, the Sounds of Swing and many other bands. He was a member of the American Federation of Musicians. An avid golfer, he will be fondly remembered by his many friends at Lake Wright Golf Course.
Surviving are his wife, Linda; stepson, Jason Gordon and his wife Kathryn and their daughter Lily of Fredericksburg; stepdaughter, Kathlin Gordon and her partner Anthony Lanzi of Hampton; and cousin, James Murray of Amsterdam, N.Y
A memorial of Bill's life was held at 2 p.m. Friday at Hollomon-Brown Funeral Home, Bayside Chapel, 1457 Independence Blvd., Virginia Beach. Memorial donations in Bill’s memory should go to the SPCA of Norfolk or Virginia Beach.
William O. Linzey
A beloved Cradock High School Teacher
Our Band Leader
Born 1924-Died July 2003
Mr Linzey’s Opus (In Memoriam)
I would not have been able to enjoy and understand music as I do. I doubt very seriously that I would crave both live and recorded performances of operatic, symphonic, or oratorio music as well as John Phillip Souza marches, had it not been for this untiring teacher’s dedication to his student, especially when he arranged for a small contingent of band members to participate in the Virginia Opera’s production of Puccini’s, La Boheme at the Center Theater in Norfolk. Feigning a lively march, our instruments swinging with the orchestral rhythms, we actually marched across the stage, what seemed, at that moment, to be larger than the Cradock’s football field, bringing down the curtain on the second act. Nor would I remember accompanying Ms. Linzey’s magnificent piano rendition of Richard Roger’s Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, when under the very accomplished and musical baton of her husband, Bill Linzey and his Cradock High School band, we offered up a rousing and exquisite interpretation of this world class jazz ballet from Rodgers and Hart’s, 1936, On Your Toes. Who else but Mr. Linzey would choose Beethoven’s First Symphony as a competition piece in the state high school band music festival, and who else but Bill Linzey would receive special commendation from the judges complimenting his competition choices and personal musicianship, when the band was awarded the highest rating form its performance that year. And, the French horn solo in Universal Judgment; no matter how rehearsed I would be, it was always a disarming and titillating moment when he pointed his baton directly at me as if he and I were the only two people in the entire auditorium. Talk about being put on the spot!
My tears blurred the music when he directed the band in Elgar’s Pomp & Circumstance during the school graduations. Saddest of all those moments was when it was I walking down that aisle to the glorious cadence of such pomp and circumstance. Leaving Cradock High School was leaving Bill Linzey. Among all my teachers, he was the most influential, motivational, supportive, and best loved, not only by myself, but also by his band throughout and after his tenure; especially after, when memories of things past seem to take precedence as we struggle to remember the dreams we never really fulfilled or the joys we marvelled at during all those years of growth and learning. Bill Linzey will remain as that distant beacon stretching all the way back to my very artistic realization. He was and remains the one.
1st Chair French Horn
Cradock High School Band
More than 375 years ago in 1623, an English poet and Christian minister, John Donne, wrote these lines in his epic poem DEVOTIONS---
The poem that begins with the phrase: "No man is an island unto himself" ends with an unforgettable phrase --
"Do not send to know for whom the bell tolls---it tolls for thee".
I know that the bell today is tolling for me, not for Bill Linzey for he is at peace.
Since I learned of his death on Monday night, my thoughts have turned to Bill's great life and to his family and friends, saddened by his death.
I thought of Bill's extended family, and it is a big one, including a large number of former band members at Cradock High School and wished for
a way to relieve the pain in our hearts.
Now he is part of our best memories.
Bill Linzey will be remembered for the wonder and delight he brought to us, for his energy and his wit and great good humor, insight and empathy.
He will be remembered as a beloved teacher. He will be remembered as an adult who respected his students when we were youngsters and who
often did not get respect.
Bill's spirit brought music into our lives and great pleasure for a lifetime.
Now, he lives eternally in the that same stream of life that delightedly dances through our bodies and runs through the world of all living things. It
is eternal life. My friend, Bill, has it and shares it with us in a different way now than when he walked with us and showed us how to like so long
ago in school.
A good friend once said to me, "If you want to be with me, all you have to do is think of me and I will come up right out of your heart and will be
there with you. That's the way it is with friends", he said, "They live forever in your heart."
Goodbye my friend. You will remain in my heart.