The accomplished son of political professor Paul Green died recently after a lengthy battle with brain cancer.
Robert Green, 36, touched countless lives as the respected choral director at Fremd High School in the northwest suburbs.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Paul Green and his family.
The following is the obituary submitted by the Green family and below that is a recent article to appear in the Daily Herald:
Robert ‘Bobby’ Harris Green, age 36, a resident of Arlington Heights, Illinois passed away on Saturday, December 12, 2009 at his parents home in Chicago after a six and a half year battle with an inoperable brain tumor.
Bobby was the youngest candidate to be named Musical Director at Fremd high School at age 26 and thereafter served as Department Chairman for several years. Robert raised the quality of artistic performance and increased enrollment in the choir program at Fremd and was well respected in the district.
Bobby was the leading force enabling the Senior Fremd High School Choral Group to perform in a public concert at Carnegie Hall in 2002. He also organized concert tours in Europe and across the United State with his students where they sang at major cathedrals and theaters. His passion for music went beyond his students to even the parents who were recruited to sing with their children during holiday performances at Fremd. He arranged many of the pieces the choirs performed.
He was also known for having his Chamber Singers perform annually during the holiday season on WGN Radio. His friends looked forward to his annual formal ‘soirees’ at his home where they were required to perform serious and funny original songs.
Robert received the Principal’s Award for Excellence in Teaching at Fremd School and inspired hundreds of students to find careers in the field of music, both as teachers and performers. Facebook is alive with stories from his former students who credit Robert with their career success and passion for music.
Robert was a graduate of Homewood-Flossmoor High School, received two simultaneous bachelor degrees from the University of Illinois (Summa Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa, Chancellor Scholar and Bronze Tablet) and a masters in Music from Louisiana State University. From high school through grad school Robert won every school music contest he entered whether it was choir conducting or original variety shows.
He loved to travel and even during his last year managed to visit Hawaii, Alaska, New Mexico, Idaho and Germany and, two months ago, while in hospice care, drove with his family to Nebraska….reaching his goal of visiting all 50 states.
His parents, Sharon (Remaks) and Paul, and his sister Sarah Green of Newport Beach were at his side when his mighty fight for life ended. Throughout his diagnosis he spoke openly about his disease and raised over $30,000 dollars for brain cancer research through walks and special events. He is survived by grandfathers Sam Greenberg (Charlotte), Wilbert Remaks (Jeanne), aunts and uncles Bill and Jean Remaks, Howard and Christy Green, Rosalie Clark (William), Gloria and Shelley Welstein, Bob Welstein (Eleanor) and numerous loving cousins and friends throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe.
He was privately cremated.
A public celebration of his life will be held at 3 p.m. on Saturday, January 9, 2010 at Fremd High School, 1000 South Quentin Road, Palatine, IL. A music education college scholarship has been established in his name at Fremd High School.
Donations can be sent to the Robert Green Music Scholarship Fund, Township District #211 Foundation, 1750 S. Roselle Road, Palatine, IL 60067-7336. Farewell to Bobby, in harmony.
Here is the Daily Herald's article:
Students involved in musical theater in the Palatine area have suffered a one-two punch, with the passing of a second musical director in just more than a week.
Fremd High School choral Director Robert Green died Saturday from brain cancer at the age of 36. His death came on the heels of losing Susannah Kist, 47, who died Dec. 4 of breast cancer and had directed hundreds of students through the Palatine Park District theater programs.
"We have a lot of kids here who are really suffering," said Lauren Dennhardt, Fremd drama club director and media center specialist.
Mr. Green directed four levels of choir at Fremd and served as musical director for its plays. He was the son of Paul Green, the WGN radio political commentator and director of Roosevelt University's School of Policy Studies.
"He was the most beloved teacher, who was absolutely adored by all the students and faculty," Dennhardt added. "He had this youthful understanding of the students, and just a great sense of fun."
Teaching at Fremd was Mr. Green's first job after earning his undergraduate degrees in music and psychology at the University of Illinois and a master's degree in music from Louisiana State University.
He began at the school in 1998, and numbers in its choral program soared under his direction, his colleagues say.
"He covered all the bases, teaching his students serious college literature to a taste of pop music," says David Lang, music department chairman. "This may have well been a university; that's how high the bar was that he achieved with his students."
Over the course of his career, two of his choirs received prestigious invitations to perform at the Illinois Music Educators Association All-State conference.
At Fremd, Mr. Green served for a short time as music department chair, and he also was the assistant variety show director.
One of his most endearing roles was as part of the production team, directing vocals for the student musical mounted each December.
A memorial service for Mr. Green, who grew up in south suburban Flossmoor, is being planned for Jan. 9 at Fremd.