Local Resident Donates Century-Old Violin to Springboro Schools String Program

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“He’s in excellent condition and he’s in good hands now,” he said. “I am pleased to do so.”

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“Sir. Cline’s wish is that this violin legacy will return to the hands of a student,” said Sarah Benedict, Strings Director of Springboro High and Junior High School. “That is Mr. Cline’s hope. that this historic violin will encourage the next generation of students to keep music in their lives.”

Music has always been at the center of Cline’s life. He went to Ohio State University and earned a rookie spot as a member of “The Best Damn Band In The Land” from 1947 to 1951. While a member of the band , he performed with the band at the 1950 Rose Bowl. Ohio State beat California by a field goal that year and he ended up with a piece of that game’s goal post.

“The squad leaders were all ex-military and they put us through our paces,” he said.

In addition to the OSU Marching Band, Cline was also a member of the OSU Symphonic Band and the drum major of the OSU ROTC Regimental Band. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in music education in 1951, Cline was hired as a band director at Franklin High School.

Later he became an instrumental teacher at schools in the town of Kettering and became band manager for Fairmont, Fairmont East and then the combined Fairmont High School. Cline then earned a master’s degree from the University of Miami and became a school administrator. He retired from the Kettering School District in 1985 after 34 years of service. Cline was a member of the Sugarcreek School Board and earned a private pilot’s license in 1983.

Over the years, Cline has played trumpet and percussion or led a number of community and church bands and choirs, as a member of the OSU Alumni Band, and served as director of the Ohio State Fair. Senior Chorus.

In one of these drumming bands, a former Franklin student, retired journalist Dan Darragh, was his section leader in the Centerville Community Band. Darragh said Cline taught him flutaphone when he was in fourth grade in 1952 before he started trumpet in school.

His wife Rita also said, “He’s a great trumpeter and was asked to play at veterans’ funerals.”

“It’s been a great life,” Cline said. “I am blessed. I have excellent health at 92 and I give all the credit to God. He is watching over me.

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