Carolyn's Story

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Carolyn Potter Szabo, 94 of Danville, passed away Wednesday, September 27, 2017, at Hawthorne Inn of Danville.
A visitation is planned 5-7 p.m. Monday, October 2, at Pape Family Funeral Home, 10 E. Williams St., Danville. Services will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 3 at Pape's with Pastor Hank Sanford officiating. Burial will follow at Sunset Memorial Park.
Carolyn was born at home May 2, 1923, the youngest of seven children to Dr. George A. Potter, MD, and Mae Belle (McCoy) Potter. The family lived at 3539 N. Vermilion St., just north of the old Dixie Drive-in.
Carolyn attended Liberty School when it was a one room schoolhouse located where McDonald's is now, and Danville High School, graduating in 1941. She went on to attend Illinois Wesleyan University, earning a Bachelor of Music degree in 1944, and to Michigan State where she completed training in Music Therapy in 1946. She was the first music therapy student to graduate from MSU.
Carolyn worked as a music therapist at Detroit Medical Hospital following graduation. Once her children were born, Carolyn became a full-time housewife until her children approached college age. She then returned to work in 1967 as a vocal music teacher at Macomb Elementary School in the Detroit Public School system, where her choirs were top performers in the city. She retired from teaching in 1983.
Carolyn was active in Girl Scouts and a member of Central Woodward Christian Church and Bethany Christian Church, all in Detroit. She joined Central Christian Church when she returned to Danville in 1985, and has remained a member since.
She was a proud member, who gave her time freely, to the Governor Bradford Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution for over 40 years. She also was active in the Danville chapter of the Illiana Genealogical Society. Carolyn enjoyed sharing her love of music with others, and frequently played piano for residents at the Danville VA and Central Christian Church, where she often paired with organist Muriel Black in duets.
Survivors include a daughter, Sandra (Bill) Roork of Charlotte, N.C.; two sons, Thomas Szabo of Ann Arbor, Mich., and James (Teri) Szabo of Cadillac, Mich.; a grandson, Mark Szabo of Harbor Springs, Mich.; nieces: Nannette McConnell, Suzanne Jinkins, Janice Kay Federspiel, Marta Landis and Beth Burton; and a nephew, Richard Burton.
Messages and memories may be left on our website at www.papefuneral.com, or on the Pape Family Funeral Home Facebook page. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in honor of Carolyn's life to Central Christian Church, the Danville Public Library, the Vermilion County Museum or to the Illiana Genealogical Society.
Published on September 29, 2017
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