Wabash Valley Musicians Hall of Fame

'Promoting fellowship and friendship among all musicians of the Wabash Valley'

A Tribute To Alva Grindle

As owner of BJ's Lounge, Alva Grindle, affectionately called "Alvie" by many who knew him, provided many a band with the opportunity to display their skills.  But more than that, he was a friend to local musicians.  He recognized the level of commitment and talent required for local musicians to provide a quality product to the local live music scene.  When the opportunity arose to give recognition to the musicians of the Wabash Valley, he was quick to respond.

BJ's Lounge became the first home of the Hall of Fame.  For many years, the annual induction ceremonies were held there, with Alva devoting time and money to the events.  He set aside an area of the lounge to display the plaques and pictures of the Hall of Fame.

When BJ's Lounge was razed due to a street construction project, the induction ceremonies ceased.  Shortly after this, Bill Akers passed away.  In spite of all that had happened, Alva refused to let the Hall of Fame fade into obscurity.  He was instrumental in finding a new place for induction ceremonies to be held, establishing a Board of Directors to conduct the business of the Hall, and having the organization incorporated.

The Wabash Valley Musicians Hall of Fame is a thriving organization today, largely due to the efforts and vision of Alva Grindle.  The Hall and all of its members will always be grateful for what he did.

Here is his obituary:

Alva Allen Grindle, 72, a lifelong resident of Terre Haute, passed away Sunday, July 22, 2007, at HealthSouth Hospital of Terre Haute after a courageous battle with cancer. He was born Feb. 2, 1935, in Terre Haute, to Smith Grindle and Thelma Hammond Grindle. Throughout his life, he surrounded himself with the music industry. He retired as a plant supervisor at Columbia Records after 30 years of service. He owned and operated Spring Lake in Brazil, where many campers came to enjoy the lake. He became the owner and operator of BJ's Lounge in 1988, where he enjoyed many years of working with musicians providing live country music entertainment to Terre Haute. He was the founder of the Wabash Valley Country Music Musicians Hall of Fame. He organized and held countless benefits and fundraisers for local organizations and families in need. Survivors include his three daughters, Debra Higham of Ellettsville, Vicky Stein and husband William of Brazil, and Bobbie Knauer and husband Michael of Ellettsville; his companion and fiancee, Rebecca Ellinger of Terre Haute; seven grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; siblings, Estel Grindle and wife Lois, Donna Burch and husband Larry, Dorothy Bemis and Wilma Fordice of Terre Haute. Juanita Lasure and husband Jack, Sharon Lemrick and husband Jerry of Portland, Ore., and Minnie Stultz and husband Glenn of Farmers City, Ill.; and several nieces, nephews and cousins. He was preceded in death by his wife of 35 years, Barbara Harris Grindle, who passed away in 1987; his grandson, Justin Knauer of Ellettsville; and siblings, Imogene Price and Edward Grindle of Terre Haute and Devella Rowley of Portland. Funeral services are 1 p.m. Thursday at Thomas Funeral Home. Visitation is 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday. Graveside services at Highland Lawn Cemetery.

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