Influential Music Teacher Has Street Named After Him in Salisbur - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Influential Music Teacher Has Street Named After Him in Salisbury

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SALISBURY, Md. – On Wednesday afternoon, the sound of applause was music to Melvin Harris Jr.’s ears.  Music to his ears, not because it was for him but because it reflects the impact he and his passion for music has had on so many.

On Wednesday, Salisbury’s beloved music teacher and band director received a standing ovation and a street. Melvin Harris Way sits on the corner of Lake St. and Booth St.

Melvin says when he first started teaching, his goal was to get as many students involved in the program as possible. "There's a saying they told me a long time ago, 'teach a child to blow a horn and they'll never blow a safe.’" Harris says.

Wednesday’s turnout was a testament to the mark he left on his students and the community. Harris began teaching at Salisbury High School in 1960, an all-black school. At the time, the city had not integrated its students.

Isaiah Oakley was one of his first students when he came to Salisbury. Oakley says he had an uplifting personality at a time when that was something a young black man needed. Oakley says to see Harris have a street named after him is more than fitting, given the impact he had on the community. 

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