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Former Music Dean Paul Langston passes away

Former Music School Dean Paul Langston, from 1962-1985, passed away Dec. 20, 2012. Photo courtesy of Stetson’s duPont-Ball Library.

Paul Langston, dean of Stetson University’s School of Music from 1962-85, passed away Thursday, Dec. 20, following an extended illness. Born in 1928, he was 84.

Langston was a substantial figure in the development of the School of Music at Stetson. A music educator, organist, administrator and composer, he studied composition with Nadia Boulanger, French composer who taught many of the leading musicians of the 20th century. Langston’s works include a hymn in the 1975 Baptist Hymnal (“ERIN” 1974) as well as the anthem “God of Grace and God of Glory” (1957), a publication still available today.

Having studied at the Conservatoire Americaine, France, he earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida, the master of music degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and his SMD from the Union Theological Seminary in New York. He spent much of his professional life in support of higher education for musicians. He was honored with an honorary doctorate from Stetson in 1985, the Hand Award for outstanding research in 1993, and the McEniry Award for teaching excellence in 1991.

He is survived by Esther, his wife of 62 years, two daughters Claire Beth Link and Erin Langston and a son, Howard Langston, and their extended family.

The memorial service was held Monday, Dec. 24, at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in DeLand. Memorial contributions can be made to the organ scholarship fund at Stetson University, 421 N. Woodland Blvd., Unit 8286, DeLand, FL 32723.