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Remembering Dawn Hampton

The swing and Lindy Hop community lost one of its great leaders when Dawn Hampton passed away September 25, 2016. Dawn, a musician, dancer, writer, mentor, consummate performer, and perpetual ham, spent her 88 years a part of many communities and gathering many experiences. Throughout it all, she shared the gift of her spirit so generously, that while her company will be missed, her inspiring presence continues to be felt.Dawn was born July 9, 1928 in Middletown, Ohio to Deacon Clark Hampton, Sr. and Laura Hampton. Her father was the son of slaves who, despite never receiving a formal education, taught himself to read and to play music. Clark and Laura had 12 children, nine of whom survived to adulthood. Clark inducted his children, one by one, into the family swing and jazz band he led. At age three, Dawn began to sing and dance in the family band. When her four older brothers served in World War II, Dawn and her three sisters formed a vocal group to perform military
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