Bryce died June 2, 2020. He was a member of El Camino Reelers in Palo Alto CA.
He discovered ECR when we were looking for an advanced class.
He loved the ECR Halloween party because he could dress as a woman. He had previously done that at Burning Man. His goal was that instead of seeing a man in drag, people would think what an ugly woman. He had shaved off his beard just for that purpose. People would dance with him without recognizing him.
At Palm Springs, Seattle, and Philadelphia, he really enjoyed convention. People may remember him for wearing a sling while he danced. Because of an old shoulder injury, he was protecting himself from pain that would come after a long day of dancing. He also used a whistle while dancing load the boat. Since he had trouble finding a beat in the music, he did not dance in time to the music but to his inner beat. He was proof that you don’t need to be able to dance to be able to square dance.
Bryce was learning to square dance and had been to GCA caller school. He found out it is a lot harder than it looks and was in awe of all callers.
Love to you all,
Fran Perry, Bryce’s wife of 52 years
I regret to inform you that I have just learned that our longtime member Bryce Perry died today.
Bryce and his wife, Fran, joined El Camino Reelers in 2013 and have been members ever since. They were active both in the club as fellow dancers but also as angels for many different classes.
Attached is a copy of the email we received.
When more information about a memorial service or other information becomes available, we will share it with the club.
Eric Hudson, President El Camino Reelers
[Quote from email]
With great sorrow I must report that Bryce Perry died in the early hours of this morning of an apparent heart attack. His wife Fran and their son Michael were with him.
Michael and John grew up in this congregation, as did Fran herself. Fran and Bryce were married at the Unitarian Church of Palo Alto (as it was then named) in 1967, and it was our joy to celebrate their 50th anniversary in a recommitment ceremony here. We will hold a memorial service to celebrate and grieve this beloved soul when the family is able to confer and set a date.
Once again I am deeply saddened to report the passing of a local square dance friend. Bryce Perry was a member of the Stanford Quads, El Camino Reelers, and PACE, and was a newer caller who I had the honor of teaching at a caller's school 5 years ago. Bryce embodied the motto of square dancing being "friendship set to music", was always enthusiastic and helpful, and never went anywhere without his "load the boat" train whistle. He died of a heart attack surrounded by his family. My deepest condolences to his wife, Fran.
- I am heartbroken to hear that my friend Bryce Perry died. When he and his wife Fran first joined the El Camino Reelers, I thought - based on absurd stereotypes on my part - that they were, let us say, "straight-laced." Conversations with them about their time at Burning Man disabused me of this judgement. (Which is not to say they weren't straight - to the best of my knowledge they were - but they were not rigid, totally accepting, and great fun in an LGBT environment.) Bryce was funny, smart, enthusiastic, and an enormous pleasure to dance with. And to talk to. And he was a great hugger. - I hadn't seen him for quite a few months, because I haven't been able to dance. (Hip problems, which are being addressed.) But over the last month or so I was able to see him and talk to him during the ECR Zoom gatherings. I am grateful that we had that connection so recently. - I will miss him tremendously. My heart goes out to Fran, and to all his family and friends - including his square dance family, which I knew meant so much to him, as he did to us. RIP Bryce. 💙
Very sad news. Bryce was a kind soul whom I happily danced with quite often and who was part of our newer caller study group and Rich Reel's Caller Workshop. I saw him on a zoom call with our caller study group on April 30th and it was a pleasure to visit with him. He will be greatly missed. This is so much harder now that we are not able to come together in person as a group. My thoughts are with Fran and Michael.
I first met Bryce and Fran at GCA Caller School in Palm Springs in 2017. They asked if I knew Tom Clewe. Turned out they knew my father from the Unitarian church. Small world. I will miss Bryce’s smiling face, and hope to see Fran on the dance floor again. Yellow Rocks! J
Very sorry to hear this. He was such a sweet, intelligent guy. "Load the Boat" just won't be the same without his little boat whistle.