This week the world lost a very special person. We want to let our band family know that Les Gilkey passed away. Being the humble man that he was, he desired to have a family service and not have a public service.
Les Gilkey touched the lives of more people than anyone will ever know. He loved music; but more importantly, he loved teaching others about playing music. His many years of investing in others will continue to affect generations to come. Mr. Gilkey inspired many students to become Music Education Teachers that continue to carry on his legacy from elementary schools through college professors. He helped to ignite the passion for music in so many people. One man that selflessly cared about others changed the Music World forever.
As many of you know, long after his official days in the classroom came to a close, Mr. Gilkey continued to volunteer every day to help students learn about music and playing instruments. His countless hours of dedication can never be counted nor repaid. Even as he got older, and older, he never let things get in his way of doing what he loved. I have many memories seeing Mr. Gilkey at concerts helping students, moving chairs, or whatever needed to be done. Seymour Bands are forever blessed because of the talent he shared with so many. There are not words sufficient enough to say thank you for all Mr. Gilkey has done.
He did not just teach about music. He set an example of how we should give to people and not take. Mr. Gilkey taught about dedication and doing what you love not just working a job. I continue to hear stories about ways he helped students behind the scenes that most will never hear about. He taught us about humility. The world is and would be a better place if we all would continue to follow the lessons Mr. Gilkey displayed.
Our prayers go out to the family. Thank you Mr. Gilkey for everything! You will be greatly missed!
Mr. Gilkey had one last message he wanted to tell all of you “Keep Practicing”