Richard “Dick” Barker of Bethel was the ultimate band leader. He was past president of the Alaska Music Educators Association and had numerous All-State and All-Northwest participants, including members of the McDonald’s All-American High School Band. Barker started teaching band in Tok and soon moved to Bethel, teaching there for over 20 years. Arriving in 1968, he began his long relationship with the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta’s students, teaching them many life lessons and a lifelong appreciation for music. Barker impacted hundreds of kids. He retired from Bethel Regional High School in 1987 and continued his teaching career in Germany. Not one to ever quit, he currently teaches part-time at a small private school in Washington at age 79.