Salem Youth Symphony Spring 2006
Salem Youth Symphony 2006 and concerto competitors, winner cellist Joey Howe next to Larry Garrett, conductor. Concerto Competitors, Winner at left

Sprague High


Amy Booher first came to our shop when she was a kid. She's now a champion fiddler and a top teacher in Salem, Oregon.


Thomas Woodrow LaDuke 1918-2002

"Tom LaDuke was a prince of a man. Everyone who knew him knew that. Tom and Jane were best friends of Susan and me for nearly twenty years. Like most of you I met him as a violin maker, but he was much more than that. Outgoing, generous, congenial, modest, he called himself an amateur, but won numerous awards in the Arizona and British Columbia competitions. He was a long time member and participant in these associations and in the SCAVM. Over the years I sold a number of his instruments in my shop, which were played by professional musicians and advanced students such as Victor Palmason, Douglas Vincent, Robert Boardman, David Bebe, Helen Sandoz, Bernard Sandoz, Patricia Hawkins, and others.

"Tom had retired in 1979 from his day job as supervisor in the Marion County computer center when I met him. He had a small workshop in his back yard (he called it "Uncle Tom's Cabin"). He had begun making violins in Portland in 1943. He was not only a fine craftsman, but active in church and public service, and a delightful story teller. He and Jane lived all their married life in the house he built for them in Salem, Oregon. As a young man he worked with his father in the plastering trade. The ornate interiors of various state buildings in this capitol city show evidence of his skill and energy. I think everyone who met Tom liked and respected him."    (Eulogy by Henry Strobel read at his funeral)

A living tribute to Tom is in the artists who use his instruments. Here is Patricia Hawkins of the Bad Reichenhaller Philharmonie (Germany) with his viola.

Patricia Hawkins

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