OXFORD – It isn’t often that young trumpeter Cora VanKingsley has an opportunity to play in front of residents of the New York State Veterans’ Home in Oxford.
The 12-year-old Sidney student leads a busy middle school life filled with school projects and homework. And what little free time she has left is typically tied up by her involvement with concert band, community band and the Sidney middle and high school jazz bands.
But every so often, VanKingsley - in concert with her trumpet instructor and mentor, a World War II veteran from Bainbridge named Joe Renton - still find an opportunity to play for some of the country’s finest.
VanKingsley and Renton took center stage at the Oxford Veterans’ Home once again Saturday to perform a series of trumpet solos and duets in front of a full house. Arrangements varied from the classical and jazz tunes of a more simple era, to the more timely hymns like “Amazing Grace” and collection of widely known folk songs, such as “Oh, Danny Boy” and “When the Moon Comes Over the Mountain.”