Howard Fred Webb
August 02 1933 - December 06 2016 - Age 83
Obituary

Howard F. Webb passed away peacefully in his sleep on December 6, 2016 at Hines VA Hospital in Hines, Illinois. He valiantly battled lung cancer for a year after his diagnosis. He was 83 years old. Howard was born on August 2, 1933 in Oak Park, Illinois. When he was 11 years old traveled from Wisconsin to Dallas, Texas to join the Apollo Boys Choir. For the next several years he sang and toured nationally with the Choir, appearing on the NBC Radio Network. After leaving the Choir he attended 10th – 12th grade at St. Johns School in Houston. Howard attended Yale University and then served in the US Army Security Agency during the Cold War as a specialist, 2nd class with top security clearance, monitoring Russian radio transmissions in Alaska. While in the Army stationed in Monterrey, California, he played violin with the Monterrey Symphony Orchestra. After the Army, Howard attended Boston University. At BU he was a theater major and met fellow student and actress Susan Hershey of Rockport, Massachusetts while directing a play. The two were married in 1959. They operated a paperback bookstore called The Cobweb on Bearskin Neck in Rockport. They had two children, David and Landis. They divorced in 1964. Howard moved to back to Houston and then to Chicago where he worked for a manufacturing concern as a manager. For a time in the early 1970s he was a clothing salesman for A. Smile, traveling country while piloting his own plane. From 1973-1979 Howard and his partner and lifelong friend Nancy Rettinger ran the Barbarossa, a folk music bar in Chicago where Howard often played his violin. From 1979-1989 Howard was employed as an engineer by Maxtec International Corp., manufacturer of industrial remote control systems for overhead cranes and locomotives. In the 1990s Howard was employed by Citibank where he helped run back office technical operations. In the last fifteen years of his life Howard took up painting, took classes at the Art Institute of Chicago and lived at the Flatiron Arts Building, an artist's loft in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago. Howard courageously struggled throughout his life with the effects of being physically abused by his father as a child. He worked with many other survivors to help them to heal and overcome the shame and pain. Howard also conquered his alcoholism and had 50 years sobriety.

Howard had insatiable curiosity for (and talent for) science, math, music and art. He was an accomplished violinist and painter. Howard is survived by his sister, Marian Wilson, former cellist with the Houston Symphony, of Sequim, Washington, his son and daughter, David Hershey-Webb, tenant attorney, of New York City and Landis Hershey, Conservation Agent for the Town of Walpole, MA, of North Attleboro, Massachusetts, his four grandchildren, Nathan, Hana, Lilly and Lydia and his nephew Ronald Wilson, author, of Sequim, Washington. The family wishes to thank his hospice nurses Betsy Werling, Cory Garcia and Lori Mammosser of ALC who showed him great compassion in his final days and eased his passing.

Donations to any music education program for children or any survivors group would be welcome.

Places
Hines, IL (current)
Oak Park, IL (birthplace)
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Garrett Kallenbach
12/21/2017
I'm deeply saddened to learn of the loss of my artist friend Howaard Webb. I met him several years ago at an Around the Coyote exhibit. One of his paintings graced the cover of the program that year, and it was the one piece I was determined to see and possibly buy. I wound up buying that painting plus another, and talked for an hour or so with Mr. Webb that day. What a warm, intelligent, creative soul he was. I returned to his tiny studio several times over the following years to chat and talk about music, philosophy and art. I always marveled at how his easy going demeanor and artistic intensity co-existed within the same man. His paintings hang in a treasured place in my home now. Bless you Howaard, you were a true visionary.
Dotty Dubpernell Fehring
8/27/2017
I just found this when I was looking for info about the Texas floods. I am one of Howaard's first cousins on his Dad's side. i knew of Howaard's passing from Marion. I have a few pictures of him with my brother, Jim. They were about the same age. Would you like copies of them? I always wished I could have known Howaard and heard him play his violin.
Douglas M. Webb
12/10/2016