Linda M. Howard, 69, passed away on Sunday, February 25, 2018. She was a lifelong music and special education teacher for the South Bend Community School Corporation and Orchestra Director at Riley High School. She taught for nearly 48 years, including 46 years at Riley High School and several Intermediate Centers as well as two years in Arizona. She also served as a music adjunct professor at St. Mary's College. Beyond teaching, Linda was an active performer in many area music ensembles including the Elkhart Symphony, South Bend Symphony, St. Joseph Municipal Band, IUSB Wind ensemble, and IUSB Orchestra. During Linda’s long and successful teaching career, she was a member of the Indiana State Teacher's Assn., Indiana Music Educators Assn., and Delta Kappa Gamma Society.
Linda was always dedicated to her students and celebrated their accomplishments. The day before her passing, she returned from the ISSMA State Music contest and texted a friend, "15 kids with me - two soloists, GOLD and SILVER MEDAL results!" Her zest for teaching young people never faded. She had few plans to retire, even as she approached 50 years of teaching, citing "Why would I stop doing what I love?" Most recently, Linda planned to join with the SBCSC Honors Orchestra and Notre Dame Symphony Orchestra for a side-by-side performance Tuesday, March 27th 7-8pm at DeBartolo Performing Arts Center, Notre Dame.
Her legacy was spectacular. Some years she was assigned to teach and conduct music at 3-4 schools per day, putting hundreds of miles on her mini-van which was always filled with instruments and sheet music for her students. Linda organized annual “tours” to play holiday concerts locally including Portage Manor and area retirement communities. With Linda’s encouragement, many grew up to become professional performers.
Linda was the perfect balance of a loving and nurturing parent who still managed to give her children the space to pursue what they wanted to do with their lives. For the past 18 years, she was a single parent to her sons after her husband Terald Howard, also a gifted musician, succumbed to Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS) in 2000.
Linda was preceded in death by her parents Mahlon and Elida Harman. She is survived by her three sons, each talented in music and the performing arts: William of Vandalia, MI; David and grandchildren Emma and Cole of Bloomington, IN; and Daniel Howard of Notre Dame, IN; as well as step-children Julie McFarlin of Tulsa, OK; Jeff Howard of Cincinnati, OH; and Tim Howard of Lansing, MI. She is also survived by her brothers Bill Harman of Encinitas, CA; and Kay Harman, Phoenix, AZ; including her rescued golden retrievers named after her schools, Riley and Jackson.
Visitation and viewing will be held from 3:00-7:00pm on Monday, March 5, 2018 at Palmer Funeral Home—Hickey Chapel, 17131 Cleveland Road, South Bend, IN. Graveside service and burial will be at 1:00pm on Tuesday, March 6 at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens, 10776 McKinley Highway, Osceola, IN. Celebration of Life Memorial Service for Linda will be held from 7:00-8:30pm on Tuesday, March 6 at Christ the King Lutheran Church, 17195 Cleveland Road, South Bend, IN. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.palmerfuneralhomes.com
Head to tiny.cc/LHowardMemorial for an expanded remembrance and memorial site. Lilacs were her favorite ornament, but we ask that you please consider donations to SBCSC Fine Arts, Administration Building, 215 S. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd, South Bend, IN 46601.
Donations may be made to:
SBCSC Fine Arts