Nunc Dimittis

January 19, 2003

Paul Pettinga,
longtime professor of music at the University of Illinois, died one year ago,
on October 28, 1999, in Urbana, Illinois, at the age of 85. He was born on
April 15, 1914, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. After attending Grand Rapids Junior
College, he studied at Oberlin College from 1933-38, receiving the BMus in 1936
and the MMus in 1939. He served as assistant organist at St. Mark's
Procathedral, Grand Rapids, from 1930-33; organist and choirmaster at St.
Andrew's Episcopal Church, Elyria, OH, 1935-38; and organist and choirmaster at
St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, Detroit, 1938-39. He was instructor in organ at
the University of Illinois from 1939-46, and organist and choir director at the
First Presbyerian Church, Urbana, 1939-43, and was appointed organist and
choirmaster at University Place Christian Church, Champaign, 1945. He took a
military leave from the university from 1943-45 to serve with the Eighth Air
Force. Following that, he served as minister of music at First Presbyterian
Church, Houston, 1946-7. He then returned to the University of Illinois, where
he worked until his retirement at a professor and associate director of the
School of Music. Mr. Pettinga also worked as a guidance counselor and therapist
with the Student Counselling Service at UI for seven years. He was chairman of
the Division of Piano and Organ and then chairman of the Division of Organ. He
served as organist at the First Methodist Church, Champaign, 1947-49, and was
organist and choir director at University Place Christian Church, Champaign,
1949-1992. He performed as many as 35 recitals a year and presented a
four-year-long series of weekly programs for WILL radio. After retirement from
the university, Mr. Pettinga and his wife tuned pipe organs in Illinois and
Indiana. Surviving are three daughters, seven grandchildren, and two
great-grandchildren.

 

William Whitehead
died on July 6, following hospitalization for a stroke.