Music makes birthday special

Posted: Tuesday, April 30, 2002

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- Inez Burdick got a special gift on her 95th birthday: a performance on her lawn by a high school band she helped more than 60 years ago. In 1937, Burdick raised money to buy the Clay County High School band its first uniforms. She also drove students and their instruments to every band event.

When Burdick's son Jack asked the band if it could record a performance for her 95th birthday, which was April 23, band members went a step further. They boarded a bus and traveled about 60 miles from Clay to Inez Burdick's South Charleston home.

As a surprised Burdick watched, band members gathered on her lawn and performed ''Happy Birthday,'' the school's fight song and other tunes.

''We decided to take a road trip. We thought it would be good for her and us,'' said band director Chuck Mohnacky.

After the performance, Burdick showed the students a photo of the band's original uniforms.

''Thank you kids,'' she said. ''I love every one of you.''

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