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William Roy Trego

1930 - 2018

William Roy Trego, 87, a resident of Concord, Massachusetts, passed away on Sunday, March 11, 2018 from multiple health issues.  Born in Williamsport, Pennsylvania on June 22, 1930, he was the only child of the late John and Almeda (Von Dreele) Trego.  Bill was predeceased by his devoted wife, Patricia Mae (Yordy) Trego.  They were high school sweethearts and enjoyed sixty-four years of marriage.

Bill and Patty spent the first year of their marriage living in Princeton, NJ, while Bill finished his Masters degree at Westminster Choir College. After the completion of school, they set off to build their new life in El Dorado, Arkansas, where Bill got his first teaching job. During their 11 years in Eldorado, they had their only child, Kimberlie (Trego) Sachs and Bill totally found his calling teaching young people to sing.

Bill and Patty spent the majority of their lives together in West Windsor, New Jersey, where Bill taught choral music at Princeton High School for 28 years and at Princeton University for 20 years.  Bill taught his 'kids' to produce beautiful music that they could be proud of, but he taught them so much more in addition.  For countless students he filled in as a father-figure, life coach, mentor and friend.  He truly cared for each and every one and was able to connect with them using his positive, loving outlook and his extraordinary sense of humor.  Bill collaborated with his Associate Director Nancianne Parrella, to build an award winning choir program at Princeton High School that received and accepted invitations to perform throughout North America and Europe. Past students, some in their seventies, still seek Bill out and they chronicle their memories on a Facebook page titled, “We love William Trego”.

In retirement, Bill and Patty moved to Carlisle, Massachusetts to be near Kimberlie and her husband Bruce Sachs.  In addition to Kimberlie and Bruce, Bill is survived by his sister-in-law, Janet (Murdock) Yordy, nieces, nephews and a myriad of students who benefited from their time with him.  He will be sorely missed by all.

Friends and relatives will be received on Friday, March 16, 2018 from 1:30 to 2:30 PM at the Shaw Funeral Home 400 N. Front St. Milton, PA.  Funeral services will begin at 2:30 with the Rev. Richard L. Kellett officiating.  Burial will follow in Church Hill Cemetery, Lewisburg, PA.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Princeton High School Choir, 151 Moore Street, Princeton, NJ 08540.


As I posted on my fb page, I would be forever grateful to "Mr. Trego" for singing at my wedding on June 1, 1964 when my soloist couldn't get out of her college exam early. He sang 3 songs, of course, not needing any practice & he was certainly familiar with First Baptist Church, since he was guest soloist there several times for requiems. Mr. Trego was my choir teacher in Jr. High & when my class moved up to Sr. High, he moved up to Sr. High also to the choir's thrill. I had so much respect for that young, handsome, music teacher that he was, right out of college and for his wife, also. We would go trigger treating at his house & they would invite us in for hot chocolate & cookies...and to sing around the piano! Once, we had a choir swimming party at the public pool with all choirs in attendance. I jumped out of the pool & didn't realize Mr. Trego was under me in the water. When I jerked my knee up, I clipped his eye & he had to have several stitches. I always told him that I was the only student he had who had scared him for life. I am so thankful that just a few years ago that I had the opportunity to speak to both him and his wife for quite some time over the phone. I sent a hand recorder to him, even though he wasn't feeling well, & he said if he felt like it that he would sing one line of 'Because' for me as he had sung it for my wedding when no recording was done for audio. The little package was returned to me about 6 months later unopened & I knew then that he didn't feel like even fooling with it but I appreciated that he thought he might try. There is no teacher throughout my life in public school or college that I respected, enjoyed, learned from, more than Mr. William Trego...and yes, I got to ride a Bicucle Built for Two with him in El Dorado's Homecoming Parade. He will always be remembered with the fondest of thought and I send prayers and sympathy to his daughter and entire family. I have no doubt where he is now, happy again with his beloved wife, waiting on the rest of his family to join them in his heavenly chorus.

It is with a heavy heart that I share my deepest condolences with the family of Mr. William Trego. I had the distinct honor in completing my senior year student teaching with Bill and Nancianne while attending Westminster Choir college of Rider University. I will never forget the love he had for all his students, the great and humble musician he was, and that infectious humor he shared with everyone. I appreciate the social times we had together and his fine ping-pong skills. My sincere thanks go to him for giving me the opportunity to sing as a soloist with his freshman choir at Princeton University. Words are inadequate to describe the outstanding human being and teacher Bill was and the countless lives he touched.

In Sympathy,

Noel Sell

So sorry to hear of the passing of Mr. Trego. He was my choral director in my junior high and high school years in El Dorado, Arkansas. He was an excellent choral director and was a wonderful friend to all his students. He had a tremendous influence on my life and I will greatly miss him.

Larry Cottrell

On behalf of the Eldorado, Arkansas EHS class of 1960, we express our sorrow and our sympathy to the family of Mr. Trego. He was instrumental in helping shape our young lives. We were fortunate enough to have been in his music classes from the 7th grade through the 12th grade and his memory will live in our hearts forever. He was truly a "beyonder."
Bettye Lou Oliger Fox

What a man William "Bill" Trego was! From the students he taught to sing who could not carry a tune in a bucket with the lid closed, to the life skills and values he instilled in his students, he was a students teacher and was loved by all. He was a young fellow in those early years in El Dorado, just like his students. I can still see that warm and friendly smile. Kimberlie, I know you loved your father and all, and I mean all of his students from his days in El Dorado loved him. He was SPECIAL!!!! Know that all our love and prayers are with you during this difficult. Remember, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Boy...what songs he must be singing now with his heavenly choir.

John G. Ralston EHS Class of '61

Bill was my inspiration, mentor and friend. He kindly taught a beginning teacher the ways of choral singing xcellence and opened my eyes to just what high school singers could do. Our collaborations with my Lewisburg High School shapers me in ways too numerous to mention. And of course, who could ever forget his incredible sense of humor and love of a good joke. Part and he welcomed me frequently into their home. He knew graciousness as a way into artistry. His students loved singing because he loved them...all of them. He and Nancianne Parellla were the greatest team. Thank you my friend for all you gave me as a teacher and a friend....

My condolences to the family and many friends of Bill Trego. As a student at Princeton High School in the early 1970's, "Mr. Trego" was immensely supportive of my feeble efforts in his chorus. Amazingly, he promoted me to join in light opera at Princeton University, and in the course of it all, taught me life lessons that have stayed with me for all these years. To a man who has clearly made his mark on this earth - rest well. We love you.

Heidi Rothenhaus, Annapolis, Maryland

I was so sorry to hear this news. I will always remember, and cherish, the years I spent in the Princeton High School choir, and Mr. Trego's extraordinary leadership and heart. I was not a particularly talented singer--though there were many, many in the choir who were; but he instilled in everyone a sense of pride and professionalism and love for the music we sang. What a gift to us all! I also remember his warmth and good humor, including a joke he used to tell about a wide-mouthed frog. :) I can only imagine how many lives he touched. He lives on in our memories.

With sympathy to his family and loved ones,
Vinca LaFleur, PHS '83; Washington DC

There was likely never a prouder moment for me, during my high school years, than when our choir walked the aisle of the University Chapel with our lighted candles (at least that’s my romantic recollection of it!) to Handel’s Messaiah at the holidays. Mr. Trego took his students seriously, and for some, like me, that respect was a balm, and lightbulb and a way forward to taking myself seriously and pursuing my artistic dreams. I’ll never forget him. Thank you, Bill Trego.
Andrea Dunham, PHS Class of ‘88; Brooklyn NY

I can ditto all above and will always cherish those jr.high and high school years singing and accompanying with his choirs thankful I went to the “Trevor reunion” in ElDorado. So many good memories with him and Patti. And one was their happiness when u were born. Y r in my prayers.

what a great man and a friend from school at milton, my sympathy to
janet, love mary belle lontz

The time I spent singing with Bill and Nancianne was the best part of my high school experience! In addition to all the loving energy they provided during the normal school day, once a month, on a Wednesday minimum day, we got to sight read through some of the great choral masterpieces. The number of students who came to these strictly optional choral experiences was a tribute to Bill's contagious joy to share more of the great choral repertoire with us than could fit into the normal classroom program. I have been singing ever since with that inspiration, and cannot hear the Hallelujah Chorus without thinking of those wonderful December concerts in the Princeton University chapel. Thank you Bill for sharing the fellowship of music!

Emily Winn-Deen, PHS 1971

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