Re: Sad news: Passing of Dr. Henry T. Bahnson, Harmonica Innovator

On Sun, 12 Jan 2003 23:16:37 -0500, Prof. J. \"Turbodog\" Antaki 
>Dear Friends,
>It is my sad duty to report that Dr. Henry T. Bahnson, age 82,
>passed in his sleep on Friday, January 10th....Besides being one of
>the top 12 surgeons of the 20th century, Dr. Bahnson was also a huge
>harmonica enthusiast.

One sweltering summer day in Baltimore, ca '87, I was working around 
the apartment, barefoot and in cutoffs, when the doorbell rang.  At 
the door stood a distinguished man in a charcoal grey suit.  He 
introduced himself as Hank Bahnson.  Some months before, I'd received 
an equally unexpected package from him containing an article I'd 
requested from its New Zealand author Robert Johnston, who forwarded 
my request to his good friend stateside.  I invited Hank in, but he 
declined, saying he had to be off in just a moment.  Then for five 
minutes standing on the street, we talked excitedly of reed physics 
and overblowing and Howard Levy and Hank's re-immersion in the harp 
world.  Occasionally I'd pull out a beat up Bb Golden Melody to 
demonstrate something.  Finally, he pulled out a prototype of his 
Overblow Harp and invited me to try it, which I did.

I asked him what brought him to Baltimore. The annual conference of 
the American College of Surgeons, he replied, adding that he'd been 
their president five years before.  He then shook my hand and excused 
himself, saying he had to go give his invited lecture. Now if that 
isn't a harmonica enthusiast!  Our community has lost a great friend.

- -John Thaden
Little Rock, Arkansas

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