Hall of Fame Room is dedicated to Linda Maki Elliot Horton

By Elaine Lillback
     The sweetest music this side of heaven was heard by FHM members and guests at the March 10, 2008 monthly meeting.
        HarvLauraPlay Performing artists Laura Malkamaki and Harvey Horton played their Finnish harps, the kanteles, in a musical memorial of Linda Maki Elliott Horton.  The music performed was: Saima’s Shore, Uncle Herman’s Waltz,
and Linda’s Jenkka.
Master of Ceremonies and FHM President Heikki Penttila related Linda’s life story and gave tribute to her, her father Bill Maki, and widowed husband Harvey Horton.
     Linda is the daughter of Bill and Delores Maki, and her father Bill gifted an honorarium to the FHM Hall of Fame in her memory.  The monetary gift is to enhance the physical facility. 
     Linda was born January 29, 1959, and after a music-filled life of 47 years, she passed on in 2007 into a life of heavenly music to sing and play with the angels.
         She had experienced death twice before her own demise: her mother Dee’s in 1997 and her first husband Bruce Elliott’s in 1993.
   Kplayers  Linda accompanied her father to Finn Fest 1997 in Portland, Maine where she purchased a five-string kantele called the “piccolo”.  Perfecting the playing of it, she advanced to larger kanteles until she could perform on the 79-string instrument.  She was an accomplished pianist and had mastered most of the woodwind instruments in high school.  She had played the first chair flute in the National Youth Orchestra, which had traveled to Europe.  She had graduated from Ohio Northern University where she studied music and computers.
     Linda married Harvey Horton, a Canadian by birth, at Zion Lutheran Church in Fairport in 1996.  He was also a performing musician, and the two joined several other musicians (John Ollila and Laura Malkamäki) to perform as The Kantele Players of Lake Erie.  They performed at various social functions, with the highlight of the Finn Fest in Seattle, Washington where they were also able to receive tutelage from well-known kantele artists, Marja Soria, Timo Vaananen, and Cathy Cushing.  They continued playing at other Finn Fests, and during this time, they acquired nine kanteles from Finland.  In 2001 the group released a CD, Kantele Dreams in which Linda does the vocal solos. UnveilingLMEH
     During the presentation program, President Heikki Penttila stood back while a two display panels depicting pictures of Linda’s life with underscored printed text was unveiled by Maki and Horton.   Both will be on display in the Hall of Fame Room along with a permanent plaque that is being cast. 
   A display cabinet filled with favorite items of Linda’s including several kanteles, jewelry, literature, and her performing dress is now on display in the Museum room named in her honor.  
     The following acknowledgements were offered regarding the memory of Linda.
     “What a wonderful event this is; Linda had so much dedication and devotion to her Finnish ancestry.  Nothing can be said to bring out the deep feeling I have for this moment of dedication,” Mr. Maki stated on seeing the displays.  “Thank you.” AllSmiles
Harvey responded, “Many people knew us.  Linda would be proud you are here to honor her.  I trust she’s in a better place, and is seeing this memorial.”

     Laura Malkamaki, dance group and kantele player friend, acknowledged, “Linda was crazy about her Finnish heritage.  Linda loved the folk dancing, and was excited about going to Finland.  She had a beautiful voice.  No one can replace it.”



Millie Laituri continued, “John and I are so happy we were able to go on the Grant Eccle’s tour of Finland when Linda and Harvey went.  We had such a good time.  Linda was a delightful person.”

     A wonderful time of visiting and viewing the displays closed the meeting.  Lasse Hiltunen hosted Korppu kaffi.

(NOTE: This article and one picture appeared in the FINNISH AMERICAN REPORTER.)

for wonderful events like this one. Every Month we have a regular business meeting followed by an informative program. See Events schedule for subjects and dates.

All Photos ©Lasse Hiltunen, 2008










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