We all have our personal great inspirors: those individuals who, as a result of their greatness or command over a subject, have a mystifying power over us. They make us feel like small children; or like a preteen with a crush; insecure yet welcome; motivated; we view these people aqs living legends when they are alive. When they pass on, they live in our memories, their words and deeds always with us. This past weekend, I was attending a concert, and one such individual for me, in my life, was there. Brock Mcelheran (I hope I spelled his last name right; he's always been Brock to us!), a great conducting teacher and great conductor himself, was there at this concert. The man must be pushing mid-upper nineties by now. He has macular degeneration; it began for him when I had him for conducting classes. I remember him having us work on Beethoven 2nd in conducting classes. One of the first lessons, he turned off the lights and told us to jump around as we felt the music should look; to make ourselves be silly children. He and his wife used to frequent the local ice-cream place and split a chocolate shake (1 shake, 2 straws). On seeing him, I felt a rush of a chill and warmth at the same time; of admiration and respect for this man who has worked with composers like Lucas Foss, and groups like the Philadephia Orchestra and conductors as great as Eugene Ormandy. His very last concert as conductor of Crane Chorus was none other than Handel's Messiah, which he conducted from memory. (And for him to do that...he always told us that to do a score from memory you must know EVERY rehearsal number; EVERY part). I was playing trumpet 2 on that. My first experiences with him were doing the anthem Zadok the Priest and the Bloch Avodath Hakodesh (Sacred Service), preparing us to work with guest conductor Stanley Chappel. My wife is always telling me I should say hello. That's the pre-teen crush thing...I want to, but am always nervous that he won't remember me. I should; he will not be here forever. My chance to say hello will eventually disappear. Maybe that's my way of hanging on. So, who has this effect on you? How has this person effected your life? What stories can you share?