Writer Frank Conroy died April 6, at 69. He had colon cancer. He was the longtime director of the prestigious Iowa Writers Workshop. His 1967 memoir, Stop-Time, became a classic. In 1993, he published his first and only novel, Body & Soul. His other books were a collection of short stories, Midair, and his last book, the nonfiction Time and Tide: A Walk Through Nantucket. Conroy also worked as a jazz pianist in Greenwich Village and Nantucket for many years. (Originally aired Sept. 29, 1993)
Dave McKenna, the hard-swinging jazz keyboardist who died in October, was a particular favorite of Fresh Air dating back to the show's early local broadcasts. Our Thanksgiving Day broadcast is devoted to his memory — with excerpts from an interview and in-studio performance from 1988, plus remembrances from his sister, singer Jean McKenna O'Donnell.