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Dr. Charles "Doc" Rutherford

October 05, 2010

Dr. Charles “Doc” Rutherford  4-25-1925 -09-10-2010

Charles ‘Doc’ Rutherford, jazz professor, composer/ arranger & performer, of Huntington Beach, CA passed away  after short illness.  He was one of 7 children born to Charles & Daisy Rutherford   in the small coal town of Mt. Harris, CO.   After graduating from Hayden HS, CO in 1943, he joined the Navy. During WWII he played in a 16 piece band and a combo for radio broadcasts and USO dances. In 1946 he began his college career at the University of Northern Colorado where he played quarterback, as he had in HS and earned his BA in physical education and music, his M.A. and his Doctorate.  He taught music for 13 years in Greybull , WY. In 1967 he moved to Orange County, accepting a position in the music department of Orange Coast College where he served as the head of the jazz program for 31 years. He was also known for  creating the famous OCC Jazz Festivals held each year between 1969 & 1986.

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He is survived by his loving partner of 35 years,  Marah Kucaj-Oseland, one daughter, Elizabeth Ann Morrison (John) of ID, two grandchildren, Monica & Darin Morrison, his brother Francis (Doris) Rutherford of Denver, CO, & numerous nieces and nephews.

A memorial celebration of his music and his life will be at OCC Robert B. Moore Auditorium on October 9, 2010 at 11:00 am.  Donations may be made in his memory to OCC Foundation Doc Rutherford Jazz Scholarship, 2701 Fairview Road, Costa Mesa, CA 92626.

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