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Clark Terry, 1920-2015

Trumpet legend dies after long bout with diabetes

Clark Terry

Clark Terry, a major force in jazz for some seven decades, died yesterday, Feb. 21. His death was confirmed by his widow, Gwen Terry, on the artist’s Facebook page. The precise cause of death and the location were not noted, but Terry had long been suffering from advanced diabetes. He had been admitted into hospice care in early February and had been experiencing failing health for several years before that. He was 94.

A highly influential trumpeter and flugelhornist, Terry-who was named an NEA Jazz Master in 1991-was also a respected educator: The Clark Terry International Institute of Jazz Studies, at the now-defunct Teikyo Westmar University in LeMars, Iowa, was named in his honor in 1994 after Terry received an honorary doctorate there. Terry also held doctorates from the Berklee College of Music and the University of New Hampshire. Terry was responsible for organizing numerous jazz camps and clinics throughout his career and was instrumental in the launch of the Jazz Mobile and the Harlem Youth Band. Beginning in 2000, he hosted the Clark Terry Jazz Festival at the University of New Hampshire. Among his many awards, Terry received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2010 Grammys.

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