Deceased February 23, 2011
The college learned belatedly of the death of Hank Chiu, who died in February 2011. The ceremony and obituary were both private. Hank and his wife, Jacqueline, lived for many years in Woodbridge, Conn., and Hank is buried in a cemetery near Waterbury. Jacqueline’s address is now Austin, Texas.
Hank came to Amherst from Hong Kong. Freshman year, someone in a Pratt hallway heard excellent classical violin music coming from Hank Chiu’s room and knocked on the door to find out what record was on the stereo. It wasn’t a recording; it was Hank playing his violin. One of three music majors in our class (Fran Spina ’68 and Dave Glass ’68 being the other two), Hank was a dean’s list student and played in three instrumental ensembles at Smith and Amherst. He also studied at Smith with the greatly admired teacher Philipp Naegele.
During our graduation weekend, he and Fran performed Beethoven’s sonata in G major for violin and piano for parents and alumni. “The audience loved his warm and playful interpretation,” Fran recalled this spring. Hank also studied economics, and after graduation, he went to Stanford business school and a career in finance but continued to play for fun.
A few years ago, I reached him, via email, at home in Woodbridge. He was gracious and warm, delighted to hear that my own son was studying violin and glad to offer encouragement. He preferred, however, not to be mentioned in print on these pages, a request willingly honored. Hence, no news of him in this quarterly until, sadly, now.
John R. Stifler ’68