SIMON: Bess Kessler Simon, nee Maneloveg. September 22, 1917-August 28, 2016. Violinist, wife, mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, great-grandmother, friend and optimist. Bess was a child prodigy; she made her violin debut on the radio in Pittsburgh when she was 8 years old, the first of many gigs over the course of 86 years as an active musician. Bess received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in violin performance from Carnegie Mellon University in 1938 and a master’s degree in education from the University of Pittsburgh in 1954. She studied under renowned violin teacher Sidney Harth at Carnegie Mellon. Upon graduating from Carnegie Mellon she married Maxwell Kessler and forged a career in music while raising her sons Richard and Stephen Kessler in Pittsburgh. By dint of her talent and her irrepressible spirit, she proceeded to play in orchestras, chamber groups and occasionally in solo performances until she was 96, when she performed to a standing ovation at her independent living residence in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. In 1954 she co-founded music group Gateway to Music, Inc. (in Pittsburgh) that brought classical music to schools all over the U.S. She played in the original string quartet with first-chair members of the Pittsburgh Symphony and managed Gateway for many years. She also concertized widely in the Pittsburgh area and in Palm Beach County, Fla. After Maxwell Kessler died, Bess married Samuel Simon and moved to Palm Beach County in 1979. She is survived by her son Stephen Kessler and wife Dede Kessler; grandchildren Carla Kessler, Jonathan Kessler and wife Robyn, Marc Kessler, Micah Kessler and wife Jean; and great-grandchildren Carolyn, Ruben and Dylan Kessler.