© 2024 All Rights reserved WUSF
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
You Count on Us, We Count on You: Donate to WUSF to support free, accessible journalism for yourself and the community.

On Memorial Day, Classical WSMR will feature a march by a Pasco County resident and WWII veteran

An older man dressed in a U.S. Army uniform and a side cap, sits in a chair
Susan Giles Wantuck
The Florida Orchestra will perform his “Ardennes March,” Fred Faulkner's tribute to his comrades and the broader work of the Allies in the Second World War.

Fred Faulkner wrote "The Ardennes March" as a tribute to his comrades. It's part of what he calls his U.S. Military Suite.

On Memorial Day morning, Classical WSMR will feature a march by Trinity resident Fred Faulkner.

It's a work The Florida Orchestra recorded recently.

On Mother’s Day, the Florida Orchestra played "The Ardennes March" by Faulkner, an amateur musician.

Faulkner's a survivor of the Battle of the Bulge. And his legs still remember the bitter cold and deep snow the U.S. Army had to suffer through to defeat Hitler’s last-ditch attempt at victory on the western front during World War II.

Faulkner underwent physical therapy to overcome the frostbite that still plagues his legs, to help him climb the steps to the stage at Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park in Tampa.

He called the fact the Florida Orchestra was playing his composition the “crown of his life.”

The concert came on a warm evening and Faulkner got a standing ovation for his military service and his music.

RELATED: The Florida Orchestra performs a WWII veteran's tribute march at its free 'Pops in the Park' concert

It’s a work he wrote about 10 years ago to remember his comrades. He said it’s a shame that history and civics aren’t bedrock subjects in school now, because he says people need to know about the sacrifices made to protect the freedoms we enjoy.

The march was written for an odd mix of instruments in the concert band Fred played in for years.

It's part of his "American Military Suite," which includes "The Pearl Harbor Memorial," and "Vietnam Tribute."

Ross Holcombe, assistant principal trombone, arranged it for orchestra.

Faulkner says he hopes his music will play on, long after he’s gone.

A young man dressed in black, holds a trombone, with trees in the background.
Florida Orchestra Assistant Principal Trombone, Ross Holcombe.

I love telling stories about my home state. And I hope they will help you in some way and maybe even lift your spirits.