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Robert Modr

Date of Death: February 3, 2024

Date of Birth: January 2, 1940


After a lifetime in music, Robert Modr passed away peacefully at his home in Harpswell on February 3rd at the age of 84. Bob began taking cornet lessons at an early age in his home town of Stafford Springs, Connecticut from a former pupil of John Philips Souza band member Arthur Pryor. By the time his brother was drafted into the army, Bob was good enough to take his brother's place as lead trumpet in his band and started performing in dance halls at age 14. Gaining experience and confidence, he then auditioned at Westover Air Force Base at 18 and was guaranteed a spot in a band if he enlisted. His 4 years completed in the USAF band in New York City playing for dignitaries and parades, Bob went on to earn both Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Music Education from The New England Conservatory of Music in 1964, meeting his wife Harriet McCrea there. He was Director of Music in both the Orono and Brunswick public school systems until 1991 when he accepted a position with the United States Department of Defense Dependent Schools. Bob and Hati had many adventures living first in Northamptonshire, England for 3 years and finally in Vicenza, Italy for 9 years. Bob was awarded Teacher of the Year in Italy in 1999-2000 and was invited to visit the White House. After retirement in 2003, he continued teaching private trumpet lessons at the home that they had built on Basin Point over the 12 years they lived in Europe and also continued performing Dixieland music with the Moose Mountain Jazz Band. In 2013, with help from the community of Harpswell, Bob's vision for the Bandstand by the Sea was realized at Mitchell Field. The bandstand, which has become a summer music festival hosts many wonderful musical performers and the Harpswell Community Band that was founded and directed by Bob now continues to delight concert goers year after year.
Bob is survived and remembered with love by his wife Hati and his daughters Heidi and Robin.
A celebration in music will be held at the Bandstand by the Sea in Harpswell, to be scheduled this summer.

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