(L) Robert Patterson '94, President of the Alumni Society, and President Lindgren
(R) present the R-MC Achievement in the Arts award to William Troxell.
President Lindgren presented the Achievement in the Arts award to William Troxell
in May 2006.
The Randolph-Macon College community mourns the loss of William Shearer Troxell,
who passed away on Friday, March 13, 2009. He was 97 years old.
Troxell was the Glee Club director at Randolph-Macon College from 1940 to 1957.
“The foundation that Mr. Troxell laid for the music program at R-MC provided a firm
base upon which future R-MC musicians can stand and excel,” said Randolph-Macon
College President Robert Lindgren. “His contribution to the music program at R-MC
is something for which we will always be grateful.”
Troxell received the prestigious R-MC Achievement in the Arts award on March 24,
2006. This award recognizes individuals who have made extraordinary contributions
to the fine and performing arts in central Virginia. In May 2007 he received the
Distinguished Friend Award from the Society of Alumni, an award intended to honor
friends of Randolph-Macon College who have rendered unusual and unselfish service
to the college, students, faculty and alumni. The person selected cannot be an alumnus
of R-MC, but must be someone who has provided special services and/or gifts to benefit
the college. Troxell earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Richmond
and his master’s degree from William and Mary. From 1934 to 1939, he traveled with
dance bands and worked on a cruise ship. In addition, he played at The Mosque while
celebrities, including Rudy Vallee and Frank Sinatra, played onstage. He also accompanied
Bill “Bojangles” Robinson in his Grand Staircase Dance in the lobby of the Jefferson
Hotel during a Beaux Arts Ball.
Troxell was very proud of his birth date, 11/11/11. He was a Richmond resident since
1931 and had been a member of The Richmond Musicians Union, Local 123 AFM for over
75 years. He was a member, past president and received gold and silver awards from
The Torch Club International/Richmond. He was also past president of Virginia Music
Educators Association and business manager of VMEA’s professional journal, NOTES.
He served on committees for Chesterfield County Employees Federal Credit Union and
The United Way. He was the oldest member of the Chesterfield County Retired Teachers
Association, and he was a member of St. Stephen's Episcopal Church where he was
involved in the music program. He was known to say "My life in music was gratifying
socially, professionally and spiritually.”
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church
or donations may be made to Randolph-Macon College Performing Arts, c/o The Office
of Advancement, P.O. Box 5005, Ashland, Virginia, 23005 or CRTA Scholarship Fund,
3805 Overlook Drive, Powhatan, Virginia, 23139. A memorial service was held at St.
Stephen's Episcopal Church, 6000 Grove Avenue, Richmond, Virginia, 23226 at 1:30
p.m. Saturday, March 21, 2009.
Troxell was preceded in death by his wife of 68 years, Christine. Survivors include
daughters Emily T. Pepper ’62, Elizabeth T. Jones, Shearer T. Luck and son-in-law
Jack Luck ‘64, eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. Jack Luck is a
member of the Randolph-Macon Board of Trustees.