Obituary of Gregory Belton Chesney
Gregory Belton Chesney, 60, died August 25, 2020, at the home he shared with his mother, Frances. Born in Fountain Inn, South Carolina, on December 11, 1959, to Belton Dempsey Chesney and Frances Babb Chesney, he began piano studies at the age of 9 and organ instruction at 13. Gifted from childhood with innate musical talent, he was an accomplished performer on both piano and organ and participated actively in church music from young adulthood on. Upon his graduation from Hillcrest High School in 1978, Mr. Chesney attended Brevard Music Center Summer Institute and was student choral accompanist for renowned conductor Maestro Robert Shaw. Mr. Chesney was awarded the Kenan Organ Scholarship to attend the North Carolina School of the Arts and graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree in Organ Performance in 1982. Named Strader Organ Scholar at the College-Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati, Greg was a graduate student of Robert Gary. While in Cincinnati, Mr. Chesney was staff accompanist for the Cincinnati Ballet (Company and Academy), the School for Creative and Performing Arts, and the University of Cincinnati (Dance Division and Preparatory Department). Mr. Chesney returned to South Carolina in 2013 and served as organist at historic Fairview Presbyterian Church, accompanist for the Fountain Inn Civic Chorale, and staff accompanist for the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities dance department. Mr. Chesney is survived by his mother. He was predeceased by his father and brother, Edward. A Celebration of Life will be held at Fletcher Funeral Service, Monday, August 31, 2020, at 5pm. His friends and family request that in lieu of flowers or memorials those wishing to honor Greg’s memory undertake a random act of kindness for an elderly member of the community. Or you may simply listen to a musical composition of J.S. Bach or walk beside the sea or a mountain stream on a cloudless summer day and be reminded how lucky we are to live for a brief time on this beautiful earth.