It wasn’t just me who loved this guy. It was a whole bunch of people, and it showed in the numbers that attended his funeral. I was touched by the number of former students and co-workers, friends and neighbours that came out to pay their respects to a great guy. He was truly one of a kind. There is so much to be written about him and I will, but not just yet. For now I will share one article written by John Swartz a reporter for our local paper; a lovely tribute for which I am most grateful.
We lost one of the bright lights in the music community Sunday.
Kevin Batchelor was a music teacher at Harriett Todd Public School. He also played sax in Dogs of War, the most well-produced and professional band Orillia has seen in the past couple of decades. He also did other gigs, usually jazz.
Many people didn’t know him, but the product of his teaching effort is all around us. It was his students who tipped me off he had passed and several of them are active in the music scene here.
The old line, “Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach,” is, first of all, wrong, and certainly does not apply to Batchelor.
Good teachers unleash the potential of their students and point them in the right direction, over and over again. To his students who found their calling in music, Batchelor was not just a good teacher; he was great.
And he had a great sense of humour. We’ll miss him in ways we can’t even know at this moment.
Since February 28th of this year Orillia has lost three significant educators of the Arts. Three outstanding teachers that poured their hearts and souls into what they believed in. The importance of the cultural development of our youth serves as a measure of our society’s growth and values and to lose these individuals is a tragedy of immense proportions for this little city.