July 18 Service For World Drum Corps Hall Of Fame Member Al Mura
Albert J. Mura, a member of the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame since 1989, passed away Friday, July 10 at age 92, surrounded by his loving family.
Music was a vital and driving force in his life. He was an original 1934 member of the Holy Name Cadets (later the Garfield Cadets), which he and his brothers helped found. Initially a solo soprano bugler, he became drum major in 1939, leading the corps in 1940 to its first of many American Legion National Championships at Boston. He retained that position until 1942 when he entered the United States Navy. He was awarded numerous service medals while serving for four years during World War II.
Raised in Garfield, New Jersey, he graduated from Holy Name High School and Montclair State Teacher’s College then earning a Master of Fine Arts degree from Columbia University before beginning a long career as a music teacher, band director and guidance counselor at Bergenfield High School and then Mahwah High School. He was the instrumental music teacher in the Bergenfield school district at a time when many future World Drum Corps Hall of Fame members also administered and taught, including Dr. Bernard Baggs, Bobby Thompson and Don Angelica. Hall of Fame member Dennis DeLucia learned to play drums in his sixth grade class. His brother Art Mura is also a Hall of Fame member, inducted in 2002.
In 1948, he became the musical director, brass instructor and arranger for the Hawthorne Caballeros. He was solo soprano and concertmaster until 1963, during which time the Cabs won many state and national titles. From 1949 to 1954, he was brass instructor and arranger for the Holy Name Cadets, also winners of numerous state and national titles. He also taught the St. George Cadets of Paterson and CW (Carlstadt Woodbridge) Townsmen, one of the oldest drum and bugle corps in the United States, formed in 1880.
He was a member of Eastern States, Northeastern States, and National Judges Associations, judging all brass captions for 36 years. He judged many state and national, Drum Corps Associates (DCA) and Drum Corps International (DCI) contests.
While living in retirement in Ocala and Homestead, Florida he continued to teach, direct and participate in community choral and instrumental groups until shortly before his passing. He was most recently a member of St. Andrew’s Church in Jobstown, New Jersey, actively contributing to the parish as a lector for several years.
He was predeceased by long time companion Vivian Cardasis and survived by his former wife, two brothers, nine children,16 grandchildren and five great grandchildren.
Visitation will be held at Koschek and Porter Funeral Directors, 1115 Hornberger Ave. in Roebling, New Jersey on Thursday July 16 from 2 to 4 pm and 7 to 9 pm. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Andrew’s Catholic Church, 2489 Monmouth Rd, Jobstown, New Jersey on Friday July 17 at 9:30 am.
The Mura family has asked Hall of Fame member Mike Del Vecchio to play Taps during the military service of inurnment on Saturday July 18 at Lakeview Memorial Park, Route 130 North, Cinnaminson, New Jersey.
Memorial contributions may be made to Samaritan Hospice, 5 Eves Drive, Suite 300, Marlton, New Jersey 08053 or Youth Education in the Arts, 601 West Hamilton Street, Allentown, Pennsylvania 18101 or at https://yea.org/
Condolences may be sent to www.koschekandporterfuneralhome.com
The late Vince Bruni of Rochester, New York, who passed away in 2003, founded the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame in 1976. Membership has grown from six charter members – Vince Bruni, George Bull, Jim Costello, Henry “Lefty” Mayer, Harvey Olderman, Vinnie Ratford – to 481 regular and associate members from the United States and Canada who have contributed to the activity across North America, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, the Middle East, South Africa and Japan. George Bull, the last surviving charter member, passed away in September 2014.
For more information about the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame, visit the web site at: http://www.worlddrumcorpshof.org/
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