Nunc Dimittis

November 1, 2010

Martha M. Bowlus, 91 years old, died September 9 in Ventura, California. Mrs. Bowlus served as organist at churches in Ohio, Chicago, and at St. James Episcopal in New York City. She was organist at El Montecito Presbyterian Church in California from 1974 until her retirement in 1987. She and her husband, singer, conductor, and composer Robert Bowlus, gave the gift of music to many during their 22-year joint tenure on the faculty of Ohio Wesleyan University until Mr. Bowlus’s sudden death.
Mrs. Bowlus relocated to southern California, teaching and studying at CSU, Northridge and earning a Master of Arts degree in organ performance. She studied with several of the world’s leading organists. As professor of music, she taught organ and piano to countless students over the years, both at Ohio Wesleyan University and privately, supplied liturgical music for many churches, and performed in many concerts and recitals playing both organ and viola, an instrument she mastered as well.
—Emma Lou Diemer

Walter Daumont Kimble died April 25 in Winter Park, Florida, at age 97. Born in Philadelphia, he moved at an early age with his family to Titusville, Florida, where he played a Wurlitzer theatre organ, accompanying silent films and vaudeville shows. He graduated from the Rollins College Conservatory of Music in 1935 with a bachelor’s degree as a student of Herman F. Siewert, and earned a master’s degree from the University of Michigan, studying with Palmer Christian.
After returning to Florida, he became music director at radio station WDBO and included a daily 15-minute program of organ music. Kimble served many churches in central Florida, including Orlando’s First Methodist and Broadway Methodist, and Winter Park’s First Congregational, which he served for 36 years and where he assisted in the installation of the church’s Aeolian-Skinner organ. He was preceded in death by his wife Hallie, to whom he was married for 72 years, and is survived by a son, Robert, and several grandchildren.

William Weaver died June 23 in Atlanta, Georgia. He was 78. A graduate of the University of Florida, he studied organ there with Claude L. Murphree, along with religious studies and speech. He continued organ studies at the Eastman School of Music, with Catharine Crozier. In Atlanta he served as organist-choirmaster, beginning at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Decatur in 1953, and from 1960–1983 at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church, where was responsible for selecting a Flentrop organ.
Weaver was an organ instructor at Georgia State University, music critic for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and served as president of the Atlanta Music Club and chairman of the 1966 AGO national convention that was held in Atlanta. He was also a hand weaver, owning an eight-harness floor loom, and was a member of the Chattahoochee Hand-weavers’ Guild. William Weaver is survived by his partner and companion of 57 years, Douglas Johnson.

Related Content

September 29, 2019
Prelude Filled with sunshine and warm temperatures, June 17 in Lyon was a day Olivier Messiaen would certainly have approved. The cavernous dark room…
August 28, 2019
Nunc Dimittis Louis Thiry, French organist, professor, and composer, died June 27. Born February 15, 1935, in Fléville-devant-Nancy, France, he spent…
July 31, 2019
This interview took place October 17, 2018, at Westfield House of Theological Studies in Cambridge, England. Lorraine Brugh: I’m interested in your…