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In Memory of Senator Harry Reid

December 29, 2021 07:45 AM

Senator and Music Therapy Supporter Harry Reid Passes Away

Harry Reid

The music therapy community is saddened to learn of the death of former Senator and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on December 28, 2021. Senator Reid was a staunch supporter of music therapy who presided over the 1991 U.S. Senate Special Committee "Forever Young: Music and Aging." A month later, on September 18, 1991, Senator Reid introduced the “Music Therapy for Older Americans Act,” S. 1723, to “amend the Older Americans Act to define music therapy both as a supportive service and a preventive health service.” The bill would also authorize funding for music therapy research, as well as education, training, and information dissemination. Most of what Senator Reid proposed became law in 1992 as part of the Older Americans Act. A significant event in the history of the music therapy profession, providing both the foundation for and launch of future recognition and advocacy efforts at the state and federal level, we owe a debt of gratitude to Senator Reid for his work and advocacy. He will be remembered and forever missed by the music therapy community and our thoughts are with his family, friends, and those who loved him.