Mary Jo Gaskalla, a long-time member of Grace Polaris Church, Columbus, Ohio (Mike Yoder, lead pastor) who has been involved in the music ministry there, was featured Wednesday in the This Week newspaper for Grandview, a suburb of Columbus. She was recognized by alumni of Grandview High School who had been her students during her tenure as band director. It was announced that a scholarship fund has been established in her honor. A portion of the story appears below. Click here for the complete article.
Director’s ‘results’: Decade of inspired students
Mary Jo Gaskalla’s band proteges gather, announce fund in her name
There were a lot of reunions Sept. 16 during Grandview Heights High School’s annual Alumni Night football game.
But perhaps the most special reunion took place the following afternoon in the high school auditorium.
Alumni who played in the high school band during the tenure of director Mary Jo Gaskalla gathered that day to catch up with each other and to reunite with the teacher they agree transformed the school’s instrumental music program.
Gaskalla, 82, now lives in Lewis Center. She served as band director from 1965-74.
“It’s just amazing,” she said between visits with former students. “I can almost name every one of them and what instrument they played.”
“It’s so wonderful to see all of them again,” Gaskalla said. “This is such a talented community. Anyone could look good handling the band when you had so many talented students and such a supportive community.”
Not so, said Jim Anderson, one of the organizers of the reunion and a 1972 Grandview graduate.
“The band was exceptional after she took over as director,” he said. “She was a special teacher. We heard her say so many times, ‘results, not excuses.’ That was a lesson that applied not only to music, but to life.”
Click here for the complete article.