F F Heath Jr. 12-30-1926 to 12-05-2008
About the blog:
Please feel free to share your memories with us about Fenno/Dad. Send your stories/memories to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will gladly post your letter, unless you indicate otherwise.
Thank you. Your letters bring us joy.
~Carol, Sarah, Lucy, Peggy, and Terry Heath
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Paul Erling tenor '81
I just want to let you know I have goose bumps from your father's blog. What a wonderful legacy. We all miss you, but know you're in the right place. Don't rush things, take all the time you need. You have a lot to process and and can't do it over. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
Thank you for all the beautiful music. I sang off and on with YGC during college, 1986-90 along with such wonderful singers as Tom Porter, Mitchell Hammond, Eric Banks, Laura Stanfield, Dawn Ellis and many more. I carried the love of singing instilled in YGC along with me to many stages of life since then.
Now my three year old daughter Mariana is growing up singing, inventing melodies and verses to narrate all the activities going on with and around her.
My wife Diana is expecting another baby soon, whom Mariana has already named "Fred". Recently they were in church together; when the anthem ended Mariana turned towards Diana's midriff and called out "Hey Fred, that was Music!" She wants to make sure her sibling won't miss out on the most important things in life. Thanks for making sure those of us who passed under your baton didn't miss out either.
With lasting admiration,
Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Biology & Cognitive Science
Case Western Reserve University // Department of Mathematics
Paul Promadhat YGC '90
I am sorry to hear of Fenno's passing. He contributed much to the lives of many students, and I cherish fond memories of my short time singing with the Yale Glee Club in the fall of 1970. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Bonnie /Jackson /Kestner, TD '74
These four pictures show:
The spontaneous audience that materialized when we sang from the steps of the museum inside the Kremlin. I think Fenno decided to make these impromptu concerts when it became clear our formal concerts were for invited audiences only.
Fenno beaming at the Taj Mahal.
The band that greeted us at a grassy airport in the Philippines.
Fenno conducting from atop his chair between courses at the Jumbo Seafood Restaurant in Aberdeen, Hong Kong.
Peter Stambler '66
I was very saddened (and shocked) to hear of your death on Saturday last. I've been out of the loop lately, and had no idea of the tenor of your condition. I had so hoped to see you, emotionally refreshed and ready to lead the S.L.O.T.S. for another glorious rehearsal in the Woolsey Hall rotunda, next spring. I think we're all going to be a little off-key for awhile.
I've known you all my life (and have uncounted memories of you, mostly in song), but I wanted to remind you of something that came to mind when I first heard of your condition last Wednesday (from my sister, Morgan). The evening of the day Dad died (1/15/90), you came over to 223 Bradley St. (w/ Lou Hemingway) and sat down with Mom to immediately start composing the music program for his memorial service. It was such a comfort and joy to have you so immediately involved in what was Dad's greatest joy in life, singing, and you so help to keep things from missing the beat. Dad loved you, as do we all. Heaven almost seems enviable now with Bartholomew, Henning & Heath strutting the boards.
My love to you, Carol & family.
Love to the family,
Bill Rhangos '53
M. Andrew Johnston, Yale College 1968
I guess I always elongated the "o" in your name, being a gal from Roanoke, VA ("Row-Noke"), but at least that gave you a chance to wax poetic about your roots in Newport News. It was an honor and a privilege to sing with you, one I surely didn't deserve on account of my voice, but hopefully I made up for any deficiencies there with attention and good cheer. I'll never forget the wonderful times we had together and the people we students became under your tutelage -- first freezing together in the Midwest Winter Tour, then basking in sunny southern France and Italy during the summer European Tour. To this day I don't know how a bunch of college kids could presume to give an impromptu concert in St. Peter's, but it seemed to make perfect sense at the time.
We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to you, Fenno. Not only for the musical gifts you so freely offered us, but for the incredible community you helped to build –- we can see it now unfolding on these pages. The YGC experience transcends the years, but there two constants: Yale and Fenno.
Bright college years, indeed. Godspeed, my friend.
Anne Hamner Rosales '84
Now, fortunately, Mark Dollhopf carries on this extraordinary, proud tradition with his dynamic energy, musical talents, style and grace.
Jeff Brenzel continues to blend tradition and innovation with his characteristic combination of diligence and inspiration as Dean of Admissions---and Yale music (as well as Yale School of Music) are leading beneficiaries of his mission.
Thanks, Jeff and Mark for all you do for Yale.
Fenno, you've done it again! We owe you more gratitude than mere words can express in this space for your labors of love. They have inspired labors of love for music and for Yale in countless admirers around the world. Godspeed and God bless!
Hello to the Heath Family,
Please accept my condolences. Fenno’s passing is indeed a sad moment but his legacy is one of joy. I sang under his direction for three years in the YGC at Yale, ‘followed in his musical footsteps’ in both the Spizzwinks(?) and the Whiffs. Fenno’s commitment to choral music, his extraordinary musicianship, his ‘magical hands’, his striving for perfection (and his wry smile and tolerance when we goofed), are memories that I will treasure. More importantly, his music will be performed for generations to come.
Stewart Cole, Yale 1960
pete arnold, Y '58
Fenno loved it. I mean, we were friends, but he had the power and savored every moment of it. He gave us the try-out and then with a twinkle in his eyes, he ruled. "Okay you guys. You can sing...barely. You're in."
As much as we loved being Whiffenpoofs, we loved being part of Fenno Heath's Glee Club, one of the finest men's choral group as there was in the world. How lucky can we be?
And now, we no longer have Fenno but we do have memories. The Whiffenpoofs of 1958 were a superb group but no more so than the Yale Glee Club of 1958 both in song and in friendship and for an entire year, we traveled together across this country and in Eastern Europe. In the case of the 1958 Whiffs, we were all the luckier because we've kept making memories. We 13 are all over 70 years old, all still alive, all still standing, and all still singing. Earlier this year, we enjoyed our 50th reunion at Yale and hoped that Fenno would be able to come join us but it wasn't meant to be.
I can now tell a Fenno secret: one day he told me that the Whiffs of 1958 were Fenno's favorite Whiffenpoof group.
Rusty (Popo) Post