The University community mourned the loss of Roger O. Doyle, a colorful and beloved professor of music here on The Bluff for nearly forty years, when he died last year on Monday, April 30, of complications from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Roger earned his undergraduate and master’s degrees in music education at the University of Wichita, and a doctorate in conducting and choral music from the University of Colorado. He taught in high schools in Kansas and at Saint Mary of the Plain College in Dodge City before arriving at the University of Portland in 1973, where he became legendary for his energy, creativity, exuberance, tireless energy for conducting choirs and orchestras, and booming laughter. Roger’s legacy at the University and in the city of Portland is his character and cheer, his irrepressible humor and open friendliness, and the absolute integrity of the way he lived his life. He loved music, he loved his wife Kay, he loved bringing music to people and people to music. He was an unforgettable man with an immense heart, a lovely tenor voice, and a kindness bigger than an ocean. Gifts in memory of Roger may be directed to the Roger and Kay Doyle Scholarship Fund at the University of Portland, a scholarship devoted to students of music.
“Mourned” Roger? It would be better to say we mourn him still.