Sometimes memories stay locked up and never surface. Sometimes people shout, “Remember when we…..” and bring memories to the forefront. Rarely does someone do something to bring those memories back to life, as if we could go back in time to bring memories flying into the present.
September 29th, 2013, was an afternoon of bringing memories and mentors back from our memories into the reality of our present life.
Sue Ann Beveridge walked out on to the stage of the Cameron County High School auditorium and after a brief retirement of fourteen years, she raised her baton to lead a chorus of nearly 100 voices in songs that will bring both laughter and tears to five hundred of her closest friends and former students in the audience.
When HMI said we will sponsor a choral concert with Sue Ann Beveridge conducting, Facebook friends said, “Let’s sing with Ms. B one more time, just like we did before.” Volunteers in Emporium asked to help plan and work the event. Former students are coming back home to give back love to Sue Ann and show her how much they thought of her teaching and mentoring back in the late 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.
They flew from California, New Mexico, Georgia, Florida, Texas and Alaska. They drove from New York, Virginia and all corners of Pennsylvania to sing, one more time, under the direction of a favorite teacher, who some say was “the best music teacher ever.” Whether Sue Ann Beveridge was the best teacher or not, HMI was pleased to present her with the first ever “Hometown Mentors Lifetime Achievement Award“. She was escorted by Judy and Jerry Sasala and past and current teachers in the Cameron County Area School District were recognized during the concert.
The program included the CCHS band, under the direction of Dan Sensinig. The Singing Dutchmen, under the direction of Ed Schwer, also sang for the event. Ken Ostrum sang a number and other singers raised their voices in tribute.
David Labrozzi, Vice President of programming for CBS Radio in Baltimore, MD, favored the audience as the Master of Ceremonies and the audience got to take part in some singing of their own as they sang along with some of the old songs. Members of the chorus greeted each other and reminisced with old friends and familiar faces from their past.
All participants were excited to be singing together again and we hope that you were in the audience that night to enjoy it too.
(Tickets and sales banners were printed courtesy of the Cameron County Echo)
The two hour concert was held, Sunday, September 29, 2013, starting at 1:00 pm in the CCHS auditorium. Songs included: “Proud to be an American”, “Let There be Peace on Earth”, “Day by Day” and more by Billy Joel, James Taylor and the Beatles.
It was a wonderful “first event” for Hometown Mentors, Inc.