Prof. Ava Comin Case, 64, a well-known concert pianist and member of the University's School of Music faculty for the past 35 years, died suddenly last night at University Hospital after a heart attack. She had lived with her husband, Prof. Lee O. Case of the U-M chemistry department, at 2111 Vinewood Blvd. He survives.
She had served as national president of the Mu Phi Epsilon music sorority, national vice president of the Professional Panhellenic Association, and chief adjudicator for the certification of music teachers in Michigan.
James B. Wallace, dean of the U-M School of Music, said today of Prof. Case, "The University's School of Music and the world of music has lost a master teacher, an impeccable musician, and a great humanitarian.
"Ava Case's unselfish devotion and loyalty and her many contributions to students, colleagues and friends will ever be appreciated and cherished.:
Prof. Case was born on May 25, 1900, in Des Moines, Ia., a daughter of Dr. John Comin, a Presbyterian minister, and Leta Lyons Comin. She attended Oberlin College and then came to the U-M where she received bachelor of arts, bachelor of music, and master of music degrees.
She taught piano at Huron College, Huron, S. D., before joining the U-M faculty in 1929 and subsequently moving up up through the ranks to a full professorship. In 1937 she studied piano in Italy with Arthur Schnable, famous Austrian pianist and composer, and later in New York and Ann Arbor in his master classes.
Prof. Case presented concerts extensively throughout the Midwest and other parts of the country as accompanist, soloist and a member of a two-piano team. Locally she will be remembered for her many concerts in Lydia Mendelssohn Theater and as soloist with the Ann Arbor Civic Symphony.
In 1957 she became one of the first two University faculty members to receive the newly created Life Certificate Award of the Michigan Music Teacher's Association for "outstanding teaching and leadership in the field of music teaching."
In addition to her other affiliations, Prof. Case was a member of the PEO Sisterhood and of Pi Kappa Lambda, national honor society in music.
Survivors, in addition to her husband, include two sons, Lee O. Case Jr. of Santa Clara, Calif., and John Comin Case of Grosse Pointe Farms; five grandchildren; and two brothers, James E. Comin of Memphis, Tenn., and Douglas Comin of Coral Gables, Fla.
Memorial services will be held at 3 p.m. Friday in the recital hall of the new U-M School of Music Building on the North Campus, with the Rev. Malcolm G. Brown of Ann Arbor's First Presbyterian Church officiating. Cremation has taken place.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Ava Comin Case Scholarship Fund for Music Students, in care of Dean Wallace at the U-M School of Music. Arrangements were by the Muehlig Funeral Chapel here.
University of Michigan School of Music
University of Michigan - Faculty
Michigan Music Teacher's Association
Lydia Mendelssohn Theater
Ann Arbor Civic Symphony
Ann Arbor News
Rev. Malcolm G. Brown
Leta Lyons Comin
Lee O. Case Jr.
Lee O. Case
John Comin Case
James B. Wallace
Dr. John Comin
Ava Comin Case
2111 Vinewood Blvd