AtoZ Challenge: K = Mr. Kilmury


K = Mr. Kilmury

Mr. Kilmury was my band director at Dallas County High School from 1989 - 1996. 

I remember when I first met Mr. Kilmury. I had just started Valley Grande Elementary School. A man pulled up next to me and my Mom on a motorcycle. He pulled off his helmet and he had VERY long hair. I asked someone who it was and they said it was Mr. Kilmury. I asked what he taught and they said he was the Band Director at DCHS but he taught beginning band at the elementary school. 

Sadly when I got put into JE Terry elementary school cause of zoning issues.... I thought I'd never get a chance to be in his class. I still stood in front of the band doing cheers along with the DCHS cheerleaders (trying to be like them) at Friday football games. Mr Kilmury was always nice to me calling me "PUMPKIN" and offering me a drink. That always stayed with me.... his kindness.

Finally in 1989 he recruited me into beginning band... he told my Mom that I had to play trumpet. I wasn't too thrilled about being a trumpet player but I just wanted to be in Mr. Kilmury's class and I loved music. I joined beginning band.... and became 1st chair 3rd trumpet. Wasn't too long into my Marching Band career when Mr. Kilmury made me his assistant. I would do all the running off of music, lists of all the things that needed to be done.... basically I helped keep the band going by doing odds and ends he was too busy to do. 

Summer when school was out I would run Band Camp for him and help him get all the music and half time shows ready for the next school year. I worked really closely with Mr. Kilmury from 1990 to 1996. He was my MENTOR and like a father to me. 

The saddest moment was the day I graduated ... and I had to sit opposite the band as they played Pomp and Circumstance while the class of 1996 graduated. As I took my diploma I saw how PROUD he was... and he honored me.... deeply, with a bow of thanks.

Shortly after that Mr. Kilmury passed in 1998 of cancer... To this day his teachings are always applied to my everyday life. I am president of the Sound of Dallas Marching Band Alumni. I no longer play trumpet (I retired from professional playing in 2010) but I still do music and everything he ever taught me is always present. 

Thank you Mr. Kilmury. 


  1. Sounds like a great teacher! I must admit band in high school for me changed my life it had to be one of the greatest experience's ever.

  2. Band was life... it was all I did in high school

  3. You were blessed to have him, the one instructor that cared more about you as a person than just as a student. He filled a void in your life that you really needed filled, and in return you helped him out a lot! It was one of those perfect friendships, and I am thankful for the memories you have of those times. Music is probably a great part of what kept you alive in the darkest times. He was a gift to you. XOXO


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