Franklin T. Hammond, III

Born: Tue., Apr. 23, 1940
Died: Wed., Apr. 29, 2020


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Music by The Piano Brothers


Franklin Tweed Hammond III passed away on April 29, 2020, at the age of 80, after a life in music as a concert cellist and teacher of cello — a life of accomplishment characterized by courage, dedication, and kindness.

Frank was born on April 23, 1940, in Boston, Massachusetts, the third of four children, and grew up in Cambridge. His father was a lawyer in the Boston firm of Gaston, Snow, Ely and Bartlett; his mother was an accomplished artist. Frank attended the then Browne and Nichols School in Cambridge, and in 1958, graduated from Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, where he captained the school’s ice hockey team. During that time, he fell in love with classical music, when his family gave him a recording of Brahms’ Fourth Symphony.

Summers were spent in Plymouth, where he enjoyed sailing at a local club, winning the Commodore’s Cup at an unusually young age, in recognition of his helpfulness to the other club members. He also spent some happy summers working on a cattle ranch in Billings, Montana.

Frank entered Harvard College in 1958 and greatly enjoyed his life there, making many life-long friends. Uncertain of his career path, however, he dropped out in his junior year and took a job in a book store in Harvard Square. During that time, he saw Casals playing the cello and teaching on WGBH TV. At that moment, Frank discovered his life’s work: playing the cello. He enrolled in the Longy School of Music, where he studied cello with Virginia Bacon. Later, he studied with the renowned cellist Maurice Eisenberg, who was a close friend and colleague of Pablo Casals. He took lessons at Eisenberg’s home in New Jersey, journeying down by bus every other week.

In the summer of 1972, Frank attended a summer school run by  Eisenberg at the King of Portugal’s former palace in Cascais, Portugal. During that trip, Frank was entrusted with a special mission in connection with Anne Frank, whose Diary he especially loved. Casals and Eisenberg’s former secretary, who was a cousin of Otto Frank, Anne’s father, asked Frank to deliver some documents to him in Amsterdam. And so, after the classes in Cascais were over, he went to Amsterdam, where he met and gave the documents to the father of the girl he had admired for so many years.

After finishing his studies at Longy, Frank received a scholarship to the University of Arizona, where he studied cello with Gordon Epperson and received both Bachelor of Arts and Masters degrees in Music.

Returning to Massachusetts, Frank gave many cello concerts in the Boston area. He also played in two local symphonies. For several years he taught cello at Longy, the Concord Music Association, and the All-Newton Music School. In 2002, with pianist Thomas Hightower, he made a CD recording of music for cello and piano by Bach, Beethoven, Veracini, Tchaikovsky, Fauré, and Brahms. A few years later, he made a recording of all the cello works of Beethoven. Both CDs were well-received.

For six years during the 1960s and ‘70s, Frank served in the United States Air Force Reserve.

One of Frank’s endearing traits was his love of animals. At different times, he enjoyed the companionship of a German short-haired pointer, two cats, and even three rabbits!

Frank made friends wherever he went and was much loved by family and friends. He leaves a brother and sister-in-law, John and Dell Hammond of Plymouth, MA; another brother, Henry Hammond of Jaffrey, NH; a sister, Catherine Hammond of Cambridge, MA; two nieces and two nephews; and his brother Henry’s three grandchildren.

Services are delayed because of the pandemic. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Animal Rescue League of Boston.  swdfuneralhome.com

Charitable donations may be made in Franklin's memory to the following organization:

Animal Rescue League
http://www.arlboston.org
P.O. Box 265, Boston, MA 02117-0265
Tel: Tel: 617 426 9170

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