Memorial service for DeJarunett

A memorial service was held for Luther Robert DeJarunett, March 19, at Bidwell Presbyterian Church in Manchester. In lieu of flowers, a memorial contribution may be made to Sandra Chase, 22517 139th Ave., Laurelton, N.Y., 11413.


DeJarunett, also known as “Bobby,” was born July 14, 1952, to the late Abby Gil and Luther DeJarunett. He lived his entire life on the North Side of Pittsburgh. He was educated in the Pittsburgh Public School system and later attended business school, where he received a diploma in Applied Business Programming in 1979. His love for music began at the age of 7, when he started to play piano. At the age of 12, he started to play brass instruments in school including the trumpet, French horn, trombone, baritone horn and tuba.

His music teacher, Joe Kennedy III, introduced him to the guitar by loaning him an album by Wes Montgomery titled, “Going Out of My Head.” This act changed the direction of his life and he decided to pursue a career in music. Little did Luther know this decision would result with him joining the formidable jazz guitar lexicon and travel the world. Throughout his travels, Luther had the chance to meet and work with many interesting and talented people. These included his idols, Richard “Groove” Holmes, George Benson, Dionne Warwick, Dakota Staton, Joe Wil­liams, Aretha Franklin, Jimmy McGriff and Don Patterson, to name just a few.

Luther was always a joy to be with, and this “joy” found its expression through his music. He left an indelible impression on the jazz and guitar world like many of his heroes had done before him. He was nothing less than magnificent when he played his guitar.

He was soft spoken, kind and generous. He was always willing to listen, sharing his wisdom without criticizing. There will only be one Luther DeJarunett. Those of us who knew him, who had the opportunity to work and make music with this gentle giant of a man, can feel very privileged to have done so. We were blessed to have known him. He will be sorely missed but will be remembered in our hearts forever.

Luther leaves to morn his first cousins, Sandra Chase, of Laurelton, N.Y.; Muriel Wenger, of Edgewater, N.J.; Michelle Long, of Orlando, Fla.; Carmelita Weekes, of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Melinda Harris-Wilson, of Thomasville, Ga.; and a host of other relatives and friends including Mark Strickland, Flora Wilson, Fletcher Tomlin, Leonard Johnson, Michele Bensen, Walter Hales, Tim Stevens, Stanley Lowe, Nelson Harrison, Kim Clark, Debby Blackwell, Denice Watson, Florence Taylor, Albert Weir, Andrew Cooper and George Lardas.


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