A couple of weeks ago we were given some wonderful pictures of former Rice band director Holmes McNeely by his grandson. We’re grateful to have them and they’ll be added to the McNeely Papers that the family donated earlier. Among them was a large image of the Rice band in the 1965-66 academic year. Here is about three quarters of that picture, which is how much I could fit on the small scanner by my desk since I could not bear to wait for the big scanner downstairs:
The tuba player seventh from the left in the top row . . . that’s Charles Freeman, right?
I mean, it has to be. Right?
Even after all these years he surprises.
Click here to read his story.
Bonus: Anything for the shot! Campus videographer Brandon Martin sent in this picture of campus photographer Jeff Fitlow shooting behind the OEDK. I’m not sure what’s back there.
Recycling and cats.
The left-most trumpet in the third row is Nelson Hatt, who led the jazz band, and went on to play for Woody Herman’s Thundering Herd. He came back to Houston for a while, then moved back to L.A..
He was my trumpet teacher for a couple of years, in Houston. He passed away from complications arising from surgery to repair an aortic aneurysm suffered while playing a Palm Sunday or Easter service in L.A.’s Crystal Palace.
The drummer eighth from the left is Tom Reveley, who was still serving as The MOB’s business manager when I arrived, and continued on after Bert Roth retired to help Ken Dye get the hang of how Rice worked. I thought he played bassoon. He’s also on the cover of the program for the ’69 VMI game (first home game?), showing off the new OwlTails uniforms, posing with a trombone. He went on to teach at UH Central Campus. Treveley also passed away several years ago.
I remember Tom Reveley very well from when I joined the band in the fall of 1976, my freshman year. He had a wicked sense of humor and gently teased me a lot. One of my favorite memories was that one time he teased me while I was holding a drink that had crushed ice in it. I picked out a lump of ice and threw it at him (he was on the field and I was in the first row of the stands). Just by chance, my ice scored a perfect hit on his watch, and shattered the crystal and it fell out. I was mortified that I had broken his watch and offered to pay for it. I’ll never forget his gentle, wicked smile as he said “Oh, that’s OK” (with the implication that he would get me back for it later, all in fun).
Sorry to hear Tom passed, I’ve wondered about him for a while. He was my high school Physics teacher at Westchester HS. His recommendation probably got me into Rice. I got to hang out with Tom and a few of his friends during my early Rice years. One of his favorite lines at Westchester, if you asked him for a compass was “do you want a magnetic direction finder or a variable circumference circle inscriber?”