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March 15, 2014

Family remembers hometown saxophone artist

Med Flory dead at 87; summer festival to include tribute.

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — Logansport-born Med Flory, 87, died at home Wednesday, family members say.

The longtime saxophone artist who gave his name to a local jazz and blues festival had devoted much of his musical career to the jazz band Supersax and working with bebop musician Charlie Parker. Flory's death came 59 years after Parker's, right down to the day.

"As great and phenomenal a musician he was, he was even a better father, a better dad," Rex Flory said. "We had such a great family, and close loving relationships."

A songwriting project Med Flory had started in 2013 was still in its beginning stages, Rex Flory said.

Med Flory is survived by his two children, Rex Flory and Ava Conner, and two granddaughters, Jaimie and Emily Franklin. His wife Joan Flory, a singer he met on tour, passed away in 2000.

"He kind of lived life free of fear and regret," Rex Flory said of his father. "He taught us all to just hey, cut your own path through life."

He and Med Flory's niece Ann Dahman, Logansport, both said Med Flory's death was sudden but not surprising.

"I was not shocked because I knew how old he was," Dahman said. "It was very saddening for us — he was the most talented person I ever knew, an amazing musician plus a lot of other things."

"He's gonna be missed," Dahman said.

The annual Med Flory Jazz and Blues Festival is slated to take place this summer and will include a tribute to Flory. Cass County Arts Alliance leader Dave Herman said Saturday plans were just beginning to take shape.

"We are going to pay tribute to him and make sure that he gets the mention that he deserves," Herman said.

Sarah Einselen is news editor at the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at sarah.einselen@pharostribune.com or 574-732-5151. Twitter: @PharosSME.

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