Paxton admitted to Dulaney Drum Major, Laura Fletcher Lord, how embarrassing it would be to have a funeral procession with only a few vehicles. He would not have been embarrassed, for his family, friends and students arrived in droves last night to honor the life of the man whose legacy will touch this community for generations.
Dawn and McKenna were gracious to allow us to share stories for a good part of the evening about the man who was first and foremost theirs. The leitmotiv? He knew just what you needed. He could assess each of us in any given circumstance, and then adjust his response with the result of leading, guiding and growing us up.
He taught us self discipline. He taught us to LOVE music. And he taught us to have pride in ourselves, one another and the performance. That’s the mark of an effective teacher.
Led by Franklin High School band director, Brian Frazier, the Paxton Tribute Band included musicians from both Dulaney and Westminster High School.
Brian Balmages, composer and arranger of Beyond the Summit, and Dulaney High School graduate, led both his father and wife, musicians in their own right, on the stage to honor Mr Paxton, for whom Balmages wrote the composition.
Dawn and McKenna, buried in a tsunami of love and appreciation.
Surrounded by Bobby, Randy and other family, the celebration overflowed.
The Paxton Drum Line, led by Alan Kessel, my own kids’ music teacher at Northwest Middle School, was a tribute in itself. The other tribute is that Lori Shamer Douglas, music teacher at Runneymede Elementary could not participate as she was leading two of my other kids through an instrumental performance. Out paying it forward!
Peter Macedo, musician and loose scientist created a winsome tribute via film . . .
And Don Myers, bottom right, honored his long time friend and colleague with heartfelt reflections.
Laura Fletcher Lord and Glen Reuschling leading us through Paxton’s “Eyes! . . . ”
With pride and love, Paxton leaves behind a community of teachers, artists and musicians that will continue to pay his legacy forward.
And that’s a win for each one of us.