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Vernon F. Leidig

Dr. Vernon F. Leidig

Vernon passed away peacefully of natural causes at age 93 on February 23, 2013. He was born July 18, 1919 in Monterey, CA. He was preceded in death by parents Benjamin and Frances, and brother George. Vernon graduated from Salinas High School, Santa Barbara State College, received two Masters Degrees from USC, and a PhD from So. Florida Graduate School.

Vernon was best known as a music teacher in the Los Angeles area. He taught at Virgil Junior High School for 7 years, directing a 125 piece orchestra that received national recognition. He then was Professor of Music at California State University, Los Angeles for 33 years. At CSULA he initiated the Instrumental Music Education program, and directed the Brass Choir for many years. He received the Outstanding Professor Award in 1964, and the Gold Award of Recognition by the Calif. School Band and Orchestra Association in 1967. He was admired for his service to the University, concern for his students, teaching expertise, and his knowledge of brass instrument performance and literature.

Vernon was recognized for his publications and instrumental arrangements for school groups. These include college text books called the "Contemporary Series", nine orchestra and band albums, and more than 150 arrangements and original pieces for orchestra and band. Most notable are his Classics For Orchestra which include 50 movements of symphonies and classical compositions.

For 64 years, Vernon was a member of Oneonta Congregational Church where he was active in wider relations and music committees. He started the music scholarship quartet and was recognized for 50 years of service in music in 2007. He was also a member of the Oneonta Club and past president of the Pasadena Lawn Bowling Club.

He lived in South Pasadena for many years and is survived by his wife of 69 years, Merilyn, 3 sons: Leigh (Margot), Lane (Angie) and Lauren (Fon); 8 grandaughters: Bonnie (Greg), Kimi (Harvey), Melissa (Raymond), Vanessa (Sarkis), Robynn, Eviane, Elizabeth, and Monica; and 4 great-grandchildren: Austin, Grace, Cassandra, and Preston. Vernon loved involving everyone in the family in music by giving them lessons, and always encouraged them to pursue their education. Vernon was very family-oriented and loved traveling together and participating in family celebrations.

A celebration of Vernon's life will be Saturday March 16, 2013, 2:00 pm, at Oneonta Congregational Church, 1515 Garfield Ave., South Pasadena, CA 91030. Remembrances may be made in Vernon's name to the Oneonta Church Music Department.

Published in Pasadena Star-News from Mar. 10 to Mar. 12, 2013
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