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James D. Buckwalter

Posted By DeBord-Snyder Funeral Home & Crematory On April 20, 2016 @ 3:23 pm In Obituaries | 7 Comments

Buckwalter JamesWEB

James D. Buckwalter

Classical pianist James D. Buckwalter, 83, died at his Philadelphia residence on April 18, 2016. Jim, as he was known to his family and friends, was the son of the late Noah D. and Carolyn L. Buckwalter.

After graduation from J.P. McCaskey High School he earned a Master of Music degree from the Philadelphia Musical Academy.

His talent was recognized early.  At the age of 17 he won the state contest for pianists sponsored by the Pennsylvania Federation of Music. Later in his career he was a guest soloist for the Lancaster Symphony Orchestra, and a featured performer at the Artists in Concert series at Franklin and Marshall College. His work included numerous recitals at the Philadelphia Ethical Society, the Philadelphia Art Alliance, and the Philadelphia Musical Academy, as well as his experience as organist and choir director at both the Methodist Church in Manayunk and the First United Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia. His principal vocation was private instruction in piano at various studios. One of his favorite memories was his lunch with American composer Samuel Barber where he played Barber’s own composition for the composer.

Jim is survived by his sister Shirley B. Master (wife of James Master) of Venice, Florida,  his brother Ronald Buckwalter (husband of Dollie, nee Fitting), and his “kid sister” Kathy B. Hoffman (wife of Tom Hoffman), of Lancaster along with several nieces and nephews.

Private services will be held at the convenience of the family.

Condolences for the family of “James D. Buckwalter”

Condolence from Richard Charles on April 21st, 2016 12:06 am

Dear Shirley, Ron, and Kathy,
Our hearltfelt sympathy go to you on Jim’s death. He was a really good guy and a wonderful artist. Our thoughts are with you at this sad time.
Dick and Pauline

Condolence from Jere Martin on April 22nd, 2016 4:41 pm

The Buckwalters were neighbors on Sixth Street in another era in Lancaster. Jim was a classical musician, Ron is a federal judge, I don’t know what their sister did. They were a great family and great individually. RIP Jim.

Condolence from Harriet Henry Needleman on April 22nd, 2016 9:53 pm

Dear Shirley, Ron and Kathy, I am so sad to hear about Jim, I will always remember sitting by him as a little girl while he played his beautiful music. My deepest and heartfelt sympathy go out to you at this time.



Condolence from Maureen Callahan on April 24th, 2016 8:03 am

My condolences to Jim’s family. He was a neighbor at the Claridge and always had a hello.

Maureen Callahan

Condolence from Faye Williams on April 27th, 2016 10:06 pm

Dear (Judge) Ron, Dollie and family,
So very sorry to read of Jimmy’s passing. The last time I saw him was with you at the F & M concert, but I always fondly remember my childhood friends and class mates. Sending love and prayers.


Condolence from Michael Johnston on May 2nd, 2016 8:22 am

I am very sadden at Jim’s passing. He was instrumental in me beginning to learn to play the piano. I will miss his laugh and humor. He was always encouraging to me. I enjoyed listening to him play the piano.
He will be missed.

Condolence from Fran Kinderwater on May 4th, 2016 2:07 pm

Dear Ron, My introduction to Lancaster was kindly given by your family on North West End Ave. when Bill had a room there. I remember Jim was the artist of the piano and you in the swimming pool! It was sad to learn of Jim’s passing. I know he brought joy to many with his music. Now he is part of heavenly music.
Fran K.

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