Marjorie Malone – My Mom

Marjorie Malone is a retired music educator extraordinaire!  We judged together in 2013 and as I described “iRemember the Music”, she related the following story.  It is reprinted with her permission.
My Memory with Mom
Helen Frances Grant Smith
Mom grew up with music, even played trombone in HS band – no small task for a 5 ft. girl! Helen had a sweet soprano voice and was an active member of her church choir. In retirement, she sang in the Golden Notes Choir at her church, which not only provided community and activity for Seniors, but also brought much joy to their lives. While this choir would never receive a superior rating at contest – it receives a superior rating for improving the members’ quality of life.
The last five years of mom’s life was in our home. When dementia had robbed her memory and ability to speak, I discovered something viable and priceless. One day, I popped a cassette into the player of her Golden Notes choir singing Amazing Grace. She met my eyes, pointed her crooked finger and said: “Why that’s . . .” and smiled!
Later in her decline, I knelt in front of mom, held her hands and began singing Amazing Grace. She sang with me, matching pitch, but unable to recall the text. Switching to “Wee”, she joined in with that neutral syllable and sang the entire song with me. The connection was powerful beyond description. My mother’s last form of communication was MUSIC! (Can I hear an Amen!)

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