Orin David Foard

Orin David Foard
Orin David Foard

Orin David Foard, 47, of Amarillo, TX died October 13, 2020.

Everybody that knew and loved Orin described him as a gentle, caring, and loving soul.  He was kindhearted and intelligent, and truly was one of a kind.

He loved his children enormously and would do anything and be wherever they needed him to be. Both of his children received his musical ability and are very accomplished. His greatest joy was to be there for them, which included being extremely active in the Suzuki program at Amarillo College as his youngest son studied violin. His oldest son plays oboe and Orin helped with band and orchestra activities wherever he could. In the past few years, Orin had even tried to start the double bass program of the Suzuki program, but it never came to fruition.

He was a great musician. He started playing the double bass in elementary school and never put it down as he continued through high school and college. He was a member of the Amarillo Symphony and played with them for 25 years. He had weekly coaching times with double bass students at various school campuses. He also coached some of the double bass players in the Youth Symphony which is part of the Amarillo Symphony.  Each year a small group called The String Family would travel to the elementary schools in Amarillo and they would do a program demonstrating the various string instruments. He loved introducing the double bass to the kids. In recent years he also dedicated time to the Amarillo College community orchestra. It would be impossible to list every single gig he played, and every heart he touched with his music here.

He also had a love for computer gaming more especially World of Warcraft. He met many people who learned to love him and they played together. Even his two children would play with him as this was just another way to be in his children’s lives.

For the duration of his entire life, Orin advocated for every shortcoming that bass players endure, including a lack of ensemble music, the difficulty of getting kids into double bass, the higher costs of maintenance and so on. Throughout his life he tried to ease the burden of bass students throughout Amarillo by giving a few students free lessons when he was able, teaching every student he could and much more. But for as much as he gave to the double bass community, very little was given back. So it is now up to the surviving music community in Amarillo to ensure that bass students and musicians never stop trying, and that they are given the equal opportunity they deserve.

Orin David Foard. Born August 13, 1973, in Amarillo, TX. Died October 13, 2020, in Amarillo, TX. He is survived by two children, Alexander (Xander) Everett Foard of Canyon, TX who is a student at West Texas A&M University, and Cade David Foard of Amarillo, TX who is a student at Texas Tech University and currently living in Lubbock, TX, and parents, David Duane Foard and Marilyn Jean Hunter Foard also of Amarillo, TX. He is also survived by two aunts, Barbara Parker of Sleepy Eye, MN, and Ruth Ellen Bartels of Baldwin City, KS, and 4 cousins. He died suddenly of respiratory failure due to Covid-19.

The memorial service and celebration of life will be at 2:00 p.m., Friday, October 23, 2020, at Boxwell Brothers Ivy Chapel, 2800 Paramount Blvd., in Amarillo, TX.  Social distancing will be practiced, and masks will be required. Please dress casually – that’s what Orin would want – just be there.

In lieu of flowers or just as a memorial, please send memorial gifts to the Amarillo Symphony, 301 S. Polk St #700, Amarillo, TX 79101. Please specify in memory of Orin Foard. Gifts will go to the Youth Symphony and will be used to help deserving double bass students afford the registration in order to play in the Youth Symphony.

Use this link to view the service: https://drive.google.com/file/d/105FFyrwmifjvL7DsFLp66oNc-2AcDopI/view?usp=sharing

18 Replies to “Orin David Foard”

  1. I am deeply sorry for your loss. Orin was a kind and gentle man who was at every school function supporting his children from Puckett all the way through AHS. My prayers are with Cade and entire the family.

  2. Cade and Xander,

    We are so sorry for your loss. It hurt us to have just met such a wonderful man only a day before his passing. When I met him he reminded me of a jolly gnome- I will remember him fondly in that way- always. Our hearts ache for you. Love Nancy & Richard Gore

  3. I truly appreciate your remembrances of Orin. We will miss him so much. It really helps us to realize how much he meant to so many people.

  4. From the teenage days with his Tahoe with 4 15″ bass speakers, to the Mike Tyson fights at his home as young adults, to the men we grew into I have never known a more kind soul and the world has lost a true angel gone back home.

  5. Sure will miss you, Orin. Praying that your family will be comforted during this hardest time – we’ll never forget you, you were one in a million.

  6. I knew Orin briefly through my friends Donovan and Inez but I feel like I knew him well. He was a real man and an authentic person who had found his own way through this life and stuck with it. Those kind of people are hard to come by and are sorely missed when their time comes. Sad to see you go, my friend.

  7. David, Marilyn, Xander and Cade, I cannot find the words to let you know how sorry I am to learn Orin has passed! He was a wonderful man, amazing bassist, great with kids, and so kind! I enjoyed talking to, and having lunch with him during string family, etc… I am grateful to have called him a friend and will never forget him! Prayers for peace to you all! Pam Landis

  8. This makes my heart so sad for his kids and loved ones. Sounds like he was an awesome person. May God be with all that loved him.

  9. Only played a few times with Orin but enjoyed being in his presence. He certainly added to the section but also to the comradeship in the section and the orchestra … fond memories of this gentle man! He loved and cared for our Mom … thanks, Orin! R.I.P., FRIEND!

  10. Orin could talk at length about anything, which I enjoyed, and we often discussed upcoming symphony repertoire and gigs. His focus would always go right back to Cade, which I admired. He did anything he needed to do to get his materials, get him to a performance and help him practice. He was a great father and a great bassist, always stepping into Suzuki performances anytime I asked. He also had a great sense of humor. I’ll never forget when he wrote me a check once and there was a random sentence on the middle of the check that said “Old people smell like onions.” I laughed so much and asked him why that was on his check, to which he replied “I dunno, there was an extra spot with 30 characters and I thought that was funny.” Another funny story involving Orin happened 6ish years ago. At the time, my husband had a long beard like Orin’s and I had a 2yo. One day my daughter, Hazel, (who Orin also teases was named after his dog) ran up to Orin and said Dad!–mistaking him for my husband. Orin laughed for quite a while and told that story often to Hazel.
    I will miss talking with him at AC, at symphony and at random Mexican food lunches. I am so glad he shared Cade with me for so long, I feel akin to Cade what Inez felt toward Orin. Even though Cade will probably roll his eyes (and hopefully chuckle), I’d like to close with “farewell, absorbent Orin!” Your presence with us was not long enough but will never be forgotten.

  11. I will miss his hugs and cheerful greeting at symphony. Orin came to my music classes last year at Accelerate Christian School . He played “ The Elephant” for them. They all loved him and had to hug him! He patiently answered all their questions . They were looking forward to seeing him again. He was a great friend and I will miss him very much. I pray for peace and love for his kids and parents. Aloha Gitchell

  12. It is with a heavy heart that I read this obituary. Orin was a giant figure in many ways. Our son Danyell was also a double bass player and probably inspired ty Orin while attending Belmar Elementary school. My deepest sympathy to Orin’s parents, his children and the whole family.

  13. Dear, Marilyn, David, Xander and Cade,

    I cannot tell you how many times, over the last few days I have found myself in tears remembering Orin. And during these times, it’s doubly hard because the person I want to reach out to for comfort is Orin. I know that I’m not alone in that, and that your grief must be something awful to bear. I think we are all very blessed to have had him in our lives. Those that knew him appreciated his gentleness and his compassion. And he was both gentle and compassionate. He also had a warrior’s spirit and a poet’s heart, though, in life, he often hid those attributes in stoicism and nonchalance. But he was a deeply passionate person when it came to his family. And I want you to know that he expressed his love for each of you to me on more than one occasion.

    Orin was more than my friend; he was my brother. Orin and I met our freshman year of high school. I saw him reading one of my favorite books in our Journalism class and we just started talking. Of all the things the author, David Eddings did, the one I am most thankful for is bringing me together with O. Orin and I became fast friends from that moment on and we were constantly together. I have about a billion stories that some of you would understand well, having known him, and more than a few that I won’t share, but that will always bring a smile to my face, and a chuckle. Only now, those smiles and that laughter will be accompanied by a tear in my eye and a tightness in my throat. Orin was a true kindred spirit. He and I spent countless hours together playing games, cruising around town, or just hanging out and enjoying each other’s company. Orin was a fixture in the Dodson home, and my parents and my sisters and I all consider him part of the family. He was a unique person with a beautiful soul. He took care of me through my most difficult times as a young man and was also there to celebrate with me during the fun times. I like to think I did the same for him.

    Our lives, after high school took us in different directions but, no matter the miles between us or the time that passed, whenever we talked or got together, it was like no time had passed. Orin and I spoke often about life and the twists and turns it takes. We talked about the joys and the disappointments and commiserated with each other over the hard parts. I think that our friendship was as much an anchor and attachment to our childhood to him as it was to me. He spoke often to me about his love for Xander and Cade, and the pride he felt in them. He always talked about being amazed that these two amazing young people had come from HIM. It didn’t amaze me. I knew that his children were destined to be as talented and smart and wonderful as their father. But I loved him for his humility. I loved him for his sense of humor. I loved him for his loyalty and compassion. I loved him for all the time we spent together. And I will always love him for the memories. I will love him for being my brother.

    Xander, Cade, David & Marilyn, thank you for sharing your father and your son with me. My life will always bear his mark, and I will forever be thankful that he was a part of my life. Please know always that I am here for you all if any of you need anything, even if that is just an ear. Orin would have done the same for me. Orin, I wish you peace. And until we meet again, I wish you shade and sweet water. Goodbye, my brother.
    Love Always,
    Dave

  14. What a great and wonderful man. Your gifts of kindness, caring, and friendship will move through me forever. You were a beacon of light for so many. You made life innocent and beautiful with your ways. You kept so many straight on the path of good with your encouragement. Your legacy !ives in people like me otherwise destined to fail miserably. It is my grateful honor to say, “He was my good friend and conscience when needed”. Gamers to the end baby! My O, the best-est bass…smh. Creshendo on brother! Chopin. Handle. Beethoven. Mozart. Foard. The greatest of them all. OF the prepositional greatness…lol. In my dreams, your thumping that shield of protection on this cellos back (plink, plank, plunk). Bass clef for life! Thank you for changing my life. Sunshine out.

  15. I taught Orin bass at Belmar. I remember suggesting to him to try the bass. He just seemed to fit the instrument. The minute he picked it up it was the perfect fit. He took it seriously whereas some students don’t just because of the size of the bass is not easy to handle for a fourth grader. He was one of my very favorite students ever. I even managed to find a song in the fourth that had a bass part that made him shine and he loved it. My son died at 33 so I share your grief. I was blessed to have Orin Foard cross my path in life!! Sharon McDonald

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