The I.B.M. Blog & Articles

The International Brotherhood of Magicians

22 Jul

August Broken Wand Honors 11 Magicians

Category: Broken Wand   Posted by: C. DENNIS SCHICK



Dr. Frank Johnson Beasley II, 91, of Pompano Beach, Florida, died June 8, 2018. He was a former I.B.M. member (1986-2017). He was a member of the Order of Merlin (twenty-five years a continuous member). He also was a member of Ring 150 (Fort Lauderdale, Florida), and Ring 337 (Pompano Beach, Florida). Born in Athens, Ohio, after high school in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, he served as a medical corpsman at the U.S. Naval Training Center, Bainbridge, Maryland during WWII. That experience led to a life-long interest in medicine. He graduated Ohio Wesleyan University and Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, specializing in ophthalmology. He and his late wife, Joan, lived fifty-six years in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where he had his private practice until 2012. In addition to magic, he loved playing the drums, and was a competitive tennis player well into his 80s. Survivors include his daughters, Liza (Henry) Ames, Andrea Walters, and Alyson Kass; son, Stevens (Lisa); six grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.




A recent issue of the Ring 25 magazine, Key Ring, reported that Morley David Russell Budden, of Javea, Alicante, Spain, has died. He was a former member of the I.B.M. (1990-2014). At one time he was the head of Kaymar Magic and was a dealer at magic conventions. Among survivors is his widow, Barbara.



Steven Andrew Dixon, 60, of Marietta, Ohio, died July 6, 2018. His I.B.M. membership number was 66506, and he had been a member since 2006. He also was a member of Ring 197 (Marietta, Ohio). Born in Parkersburg, West Virginia, he attended Marshall University, and worked for BF Goodrich, Huntsman, and retired from Chevron after twenty-six years. After performing magic part-time for a number of years, he  began performing full-time in 2015. He used magic in a variety of ways, including to share his Christian faith in Children’s Ministry, in drug and alcohol programs, and in anti-bullying campaigns. He performed in many venues, including restaurants, festivals, and various prison ministries. In addition to magic, he loved art and was very creative, painting and air-brushing cars and musical instruments. Survivors include his wife of thirty-nine years, Carol; son Joe (Julia); mother, Naomi; father Jim (Debbie); brother, James; sister, Sue (Troy) Christman; and uncle, Bill (Ruth Ann). Memorial contributions may be made to the North Pleasant Apostolic Temple 87, Iron Horse Drive, St. Marys, WV 26170.



Arthur (Art) J. Emerson, Jr., 89, of Colleyville, Texas, died June 1, 2018. His I.B.M. member number was 7604, and he had been a member since 1967. He was a member of the Order of Merlin Excalibur (fifty years a continuous member). He also was a member of Ring 15 (Fort Worth, Texas), Ring 50 (Washington, D.C.), and Ring 174 (Dallas, Texas). He was a mail-order dealer and publisher, with Larry West, specializing in packet tricks. His interest in magic began in 1937 when he received an A.C. Gilbert Magic Set. Later he was inspired by the magic of L. Raymond Cox, Myrus, and Harry Blackstone. He graduated the University of Maryland, Heidelberg, Germany, and served in the U.S. Army from 1950 until retiring as a Colonel in 1971. In 1967 he met Larry West in Washington, D.C., and within a year they formed “Emerson and West,” presenting original ideas for sale at Don Tanner’s  Magic-Fest in Columbus, Ohio. The first effect they marketed -- Color Monte -- was their biggest seller. Over the years they produced over fifty magic items.



Dr. Henry Epstein, 92, of Tamarac, Florida -- formerly of Oceanside, New York -- died June 23, 2018. He earned his PhD from New York University and taught foreign languages. Survivors include his wife, Mary; son, Charles; daughter, Shari Parson; daughter-in-law Danna Fichtel; son-in-law Jeff Parson; and grandchildren, A.J. and Adam Parson, and Cayla Epstein.



Brian Gillis, 71, of Redondo, California, died July 2, 2018, of complications following quadruple heart surgery, brought about by a heart attack two weeks prior. He was widely known and respected throughout the magic world as a world-class magician. He was a frequent performer at The Magic Castle in Hollywood, California, near where he lived. Over the years he earned two favorite titles: (1) “Johnny Carson’s favorite magician,” and (2) “Magician to the Stars.” The Carson title came from his three appearances on the Tonight Show, more than any other magician. The Stars reference came from his frequent appearance at private parties of celebrities. In 1996 he met his long-time partner -- both in performing and romantically -- Sisuepahn Phila, who survives. While they broke up after eight years, they continued as roommates until 2013, and remained close friends and act partners until his death.



June Olive Warsaw Horowitz, 104, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, died June 27, 2018, one week before she was to be the special Guest of Honor at the Annual Convention of the International Brotherhood of Magicians in her hometown. She was the first woman International President of the I.B.M. (1987-88). Born in Chicago, she grew up in Detroit. Her father and grandfather were both magicians, so magic was natural for her to pursue. Her father, Abe Warsaw, was big in the I.B.M., passing his love of the I.B.M. on to June. She was a Charter member of Ring 211 in Grand Rapids, and served as its president. The Ring now includes her name. She was honored with a bronze star in the Magician’s Walk of Fame in downtown Colon, Michigan, the first woman to be so honored. Survivors include son, Steven; three grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren, and their families. A Broken Wand ceremony was conducted in her honor at the Ring 211 July meeting. An In Memoriam to June Horowitz appears elsewhere in this issue.



Clarence Scott Miller, 88, of Irvine, Kentucky, died May 27, 2018. He was a former member of the I.B.M. (1984-2015). He was a member of the Order of Merlin (twenty-five years a continuous member). He also was a member of Ring 198 (Lexington, Kentucky), which he served as its president. Born in Lebanon Junction, Kentucky he served in the U.S. Marines during the Korean War. He studied electrical engineering at the University of Dayton, and worked as Operations Manager for the Mountain Parkway, as well as at one or more of his family’s businesses, including a vending machine business which he ran until retiring in 1992. He was widely known throughout the magic business for building quality wooden magic tricks. He was most famous for his The Impossible Penetration, along with one hundred other effects. In addition to building magic, he performed in many venues for a variety of audiences, and mentored many young magicians as well, including giving them magic books and tricks. After a lifetime of making magic, a book was written about him by Donald Croucher, “Magic by Miller,” (2015) with a foreword by fellow Kentuckian, Lance Burton. Survivors include his wife of sixty-seven years, Eva; daughter, Emily (Michael) Feeback; and grandson, Ian Feeback. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice Care Plus, Beretha, Kentucky; or to the Church of our Savior, Richmond, Kentucky.



Leeman Joseph Parker, 33, of Los Angeles, California, died June 4, 2018. He was known as half of the magic/comedy duo David and Leeman (David is David Blatter). Leeman attended Dillard School, where he performed his first magic as part of a talent show. After graduating Elk Grove High School, he attended Consumes River College for a while, writing for the school newspaper. He moved to Southern California where he took classes at Second City and became part of Bro Squad 5, an improve comedy troupe. He also worked on his magic and joined the Magic Castle. He hooked up with a partner, and David and Leeman debuted at the Hollywood Fringe Festival where they became audience favorites. Subsequently they rose to the top twelve of season nine of America’s Got Talent; and were on season four of Master’s of Illusion and on season three of Penn & Teller’s Fool Us. Survivors include his parents, Sonya and Charles; sister, Ashley; grandparents, Leeman and Olie Mae; niece Zoie, and nephews, Boston and Bentley. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Diabetes Association. 



Gregory A. Toulon, 80, of Park Ridge, Illinois, died July 17, 2018. His I.B.M. member number was 47031, and he had been a member since 2012. He was a member of Ring 43 (Chicago, Illinois). He earned a degree in business from DePaul University in Chicago, and worked for UARCO Business Forms and T&T Triangle Business Forms. He served in the U.S. Army. After he retired he devoted himself to student teaching. Among other things he was active in local politics. Survivors include his wife of forty-nine years, Sophie.



Zurab Vadachkoria, 57, of Tbillsi, Republic of Georgia, died March 1, 2018 from complications following a stroke. He was a former member of the I.B.M. (1999-2017). According to his son, Nika, his father loved magic.



























« Back