MAXSON, Dr. William Lynn
Lt. Col. ANG, Ret.
Passed away on March 16th, 2014 at Sacred Heart Hospital in Spokane, Washington. He was born on November 12th, 1930 in Frankfort, Indiana to Claude and Effie Maxson. William married Katherine in 1951 in Frankfort, Indiana. They were happily married for 63 years. William was preceded in death by parents Claude and Effie Maxson, and his brothers Jim and John Maxson. William is survived by his spouse Katherine; his daughter Deborah Maxson, his son Michael Maxson; his grandchildren Andrew Maxson, Laura Maxson, and Will Maxson; and his niece Cathy Malloy.
William grew up in Frankfort, Indiana. He graduated from Frankfort High School in Frankfort, Indiana in 1948. After high school he attended the Jordan College of Music, Butler University from 1948 to 1951. He then attended Indiana University where he earned his Bachelor of Music in 1955 and his Master of Music in 1957. While there, he also completed advanced study in Music Theory, University Administration. In 1968, he earned his Doctor of Education while attending the University of Idaho.
His lengthy civilian career began in as the Director of Bands & Orchestra and Instructor of Music at Lycoming College in Williams Port, PA from 1956 to 1958. From 1958 to 1959 he was Director of the Air Force ROTC Band at Indiana University. In 1959 he was appointed as Director of Bands and Assistant Professor of Music at Eastern Washington University. In 1963 he organized and directed the Spokane Civic Band. In 1965 he appeared on KREM-TV in Spokane making educational TV appearances. While at Eastern Washington University in 1968, he was promoted to Associate Professor of Music. A year later, he was elected to the Eastern Washington University Academic Senate. In 1970, he was promoted to Professor of Music. He was recognized as Outstanding Educator of America in 1974 and 1975. In 1975 he was appointed as Chairman of Department of Music, Eastern Washington University. Throughout his association with the University he periodically served as an international adjudicator. He retired in 1987 and received the status “Professor Emeritus”.
He composed music and the Marine Corps Band recorded his Freedom I March. This march was performed as reception music for Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
His lengthy military career began in 1951 when due to the Korean Conflict he left Arthur Jordan Conservatory of Music to enlist in the Air Force. In 1972 he accepted command of 560th ANG Band at Geiger Field, Washington. In 1974 he was invited by National Guard Bureau to tour Germany and Luxemburg for 18 days. The mission was a major success. The band received the NGB Meritorious Service Award on 26 January 1975 for outstanding accomplishments on the European Tour. In 1976 He was designated as the Command Staff Officer Designate for ANG Bands. In 1977, he was promoted to Major and in 1978, he was officially appointed to the position of Chief, ANG Bands. In 1981 he established the training for ANG Bandsmen following their basic training and became possible for the first time for new bandsmen to train in a local college. In 1982 he was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal. In 1982 he graduated from Air Command and Staff College Seminar and in 1983 promoted to Lt Colonel. In 1987, ANGR 190-1 was published. This is the regulation governing ANG bands which was compiled and written by him. He performed annual inspections for all twelve ANG Bands throughout the nation.
He appeared numerous times with the United States Air Force Band and conducted them in three formal concerts at the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC. He also was a guest conductor two times with the United States Marine Band and with several of the active duty AF Bands. He conducted all twelve ANG Bands on numerous occasions.
In 1989, he was awarded the Air National Guard Meritorious Service Award. He also received numerous awards from other states. He was awarded the Tennessee National Guard Distinguished Service Medal, the Pennsylvania Commendation Medal, the New York Military Commendation Medal, and the California Medal of Merit. He also was awarded certificates of appreciation from the states of Georgia, Massachusetts, Missouri, Illinois, Ohio, and Texas. He also received a certificate of Special Recognition from the Secretary of the Air Force, Office of Public Affairs and a special award from the United States Air Force Band for meritorious service. At retirement, he was awarded the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal.
A Funeral Service will be held at Sunset Chapel, Fairmount Memorial Park, W. 5200 Wellesley, Spokane, WA at 1:00 pm Friday, March 21, 2014. In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial donations be made to the American Children’s Cancer Organization Inland Northwest (ACCOIN), PO Box 8031, Spokane WA 99203.
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