In Response to: Lives: An Appreciation

What an interesting juxtaposition of two people I knew personally in the February 2021 Lives issue: There was Bill Danforth ’48, my previous colleague and later chancellor of my Washington University Medical School (and brother of Jack Danforth in my Class of ’58). And there was Bill Tangney of the Class of ’57. 

Tangs was the social leader of our group in the Rockefeller Suite. Nobody who knew and loved Tangs was ever surprised by what came next. One Saturday afternoon in the spring, after a suitable amount of adult beverages, Tangs supervised the moving of our ancient upright piano down three flights to the courtyard. With nothing but his muse to guide him he removed all the keys that were unnecessary to play his favorite song. In no time Tangs was playing the “Limehouse Blues,” the only song that our beloved piano could thus play. Several days later Tangs led the party around the bonfire that sent the piano on to its next life. 

Both of these Tigers made my life better for knowing them. For the long haul we would all choose “Chan Dan.” But for the short haul, and for the unforgettable magic of life unfettered with reason, Bill Tangney was the guy.

Don Sessions ’58
St. Louis, Mo.