George Franklin Banks
George F. Banks
Mumford: George Banks, beloved companion, father and brother passed away on January 27, 2018 at age 84. He was predeceased by his mother Ethel, father Milton, Daughter Carolyn Reeves, Son Mark Sanford, Son-in-law Derrick Reid, Brother Milton Banks, Jr. and Brother Charles J.L. Banks
He is survived by his loving companion Beatrice Redman, children Delores Green (Pastor George) of Ogden, Utah, George Banks, Jr, of Salt Lake City Utah; Juanita Reid, Marla Jackson, Sheena Jackson and Marsheed Jackson of Rochester, New York. Honorary grandchild Vanessa Redman, and additional grandchildren: Donny Reeves, Marcus Carr, Tamika Banks, Ebony Carol Banks, Paris Camille Banks, George Franklin Banks III, Mark, Sade and Juanita Sanford, Nyasia Jackson, Denaizah Holmes; Mekhi Jackson, King David Beckford, Master Colbert; Dai'veonne Jackson. Amari Jackson, Denim Jackson, Kayoni Muhammad, Keiden Jackson, Kiarie Jackson, and many great-grandchildren; Sisters Midge Thomas (Dr. Freddie), Helen Corley (Charles); Sister-in-law, Audrose Banks, and a host of nieces and nephews.
George was born in Mumford, NY, the youngest son of the late Milton and Ethel Banks.
George took an interest in music from an early age: between ages 3 and 4; he started playing chords on the piano after hearing his mother play hymns and his big brother Charles practice his music lessons.
His first music teaches was Hazel Harvey and he later studied music under professors Ms. Morrisey, Mark Fax, Mildred Melenbacher as well as studing music at Hostein and later at Eastman School of Music.
George played his 1st solo for the public at age 5 at Second Baptist church, playing “Lullaby” and “I’m on the Battlefield for my Lord”, where multiple telephone books had to be placed on the piano bench to allow him to reach the keys! His first full concert was at Mumford Fire Hall at age 6.
George played tuba and drums in the Caledonia High School band. He had a record of 10 years of playing piano and organ at Second Baptist church, when he enlisted in the Air Force at age 18 and while stationed in Ogden, Utah and played in the 622 Air Force Band for 4 years. He was also the director of music at the First Baptist church in Alexandra, Louisiana. George later attended Anderson College in Indiana where he studied music.
He became the musician for the Troubadours choir at Memorial AME Zion church at age 16 years old. He also directed many additional church choirs in Rochester and surrounding areas, playing organ and piano, while also working as a camera salesperson for Eastman Kodak. When sent to New York city by Kodak to work at the Exhibition Center, George also was the organist at the 7th Avenue Baptist church in New York City until 1971.
He was the former choir director of Genesee County Museum Choir, City School District’s Gospel Unique student Anderson College Choir as well as the Director of music at St. Joseph’s Villa. George also pioneer forming the first gospel choir at Corpus Christi Catholic Church.
George was also employed by the Rochester City School District as a Special Music Teacher, teaching Gospel Music and Jazz, until his retirement in 1999.
George was known locally and nationally for his gifted musical talent and being able to “play by ear” in a variety of styles of Gospel, Jazz, Blues, Pop, Classical and Modern. George had way a stirring a crowd when he ticked the piano and organ keys. He also way with of getting young people interested in playing musical instruments and singing. His talent allowed him to play in many churches as well as many clubs and concert halls.
George has played for performers such as Lou Rawls, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, Robert Goulet and Louis Armstrong. Just a handful of years ago, George was inducted into the Music Hall of Fame from his former High School, Caledonia-Mumford High.
In 1998, George returned to play for the Second Baptist church, his starting point, Second Baptist church of Mumford, to become the minister of music and director of the Men’s choir.
Family and friends are invited to call Saturday, February 10th 11 am-Noon at Second Baptist Church, 957 George Street, Mumford NY 14511 where his Funeral Service will be held immediately following calling hours at 12 Noon. Private interment.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Clayton A. Coles Scholarship Fund, c/o Second Baptist Church, 957 George St., Mumford, NY 14511
Now George Banks is playing keyboards for the Heavenly choir.