Blog Article

Bringing the violin back to full flower.

Live music is flowing at American House Wildwood and Rip is one reason why. Born and raised in Southington, Connecticut, Rip’s parents got him into violin lessons at a young age. Today, he’s still playing the beloved instrument he put down after high school.

“I went to the University of Connecticut to study electrical engineering and didn’t pick up the violin again for thirty years,” Rip said with a laugh. “After I graduated, I joined the Air Force for three years. I was in a radar squadron, working with computers. After my time in the Air Force, I earned my master’s degree in business administration.”

With two degrees under his belt, Rip joined IBM. He worked his way through several different roles with the multinational tech company. “My last position with IBM was in Burlington, Vermont, where I was manager for the strategic planning of computer chips. That was an exciting time. After I semi-retired from IBM, I picked up the violin again and started playing music again.”

It took Rip a month or so to get a feel and rhythm for the violin again. “I have a beautiful violin that’s very old and it lost its tone from not being played,” Rip said. “Over the years, though, the violin has come back to full flower.”

He has played a wide variety of music on his violin, including old time gospel and Cajun when he lived in North Carolina in the early 1990s. Even more impressive, Rip played with different professional orchestras like the prestigious Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra. He played all nine of Beethoven’s symphonies and cherished his time with them. “It was an honor to play with the Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra. I performed with them for about ten years before moving to Florida. I was also with the Village Philharmonic Orchestra for a couple years, but finally gave that up to play more pickleball,” Rip said with a smile.

He’s coming up on his three-year anniversary at American House Wildwood. “My daughter and wife both passed in 2019, but my son lives with me here and I take care of him. This is home. I enjoy playing the violin for the residents and every night I listen to world-class orchestras from around the world on YouTube. Life is very pleasant at American House.”

We all have a story. A story that taught us something, changed us and helped us define who we are. At American House, your next chapter is waiting to be written. We're here to help you write it. Your way.

Written By

Jim Dudley

With over 20 years of writing experience, Jim has worked for some of the biggest ad agencies in the Detroit area before joining American House. He earned a degree from Marquette University.

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