Farewell, Mr. Belote

On June 1st at 4:30 pm, band director Taylor Belote announced his resignation from Deer Park High School. “Along with my calling to spend my life teaching music, I also have a very important calling as a father, husband, and family man that has been growing increasingly difficult to balance as my children get older, and my life gets busier,” says Belote in a Facebook post on the Deer Park Band Boosters page. 

Belote started working for the Deer Park School District 8 years ago, and in that time he has impacted the music program in a big way by adding many music groups to the high school, including Field Marching Band and Stag Steel Pans.

From my own experience with Mr. Belote, he is devoted to his family and the kids in his band class.  Every time there was a pep band game, he would drive, making sure to spend time with his family before the game would start. He was also one of the most giving teachers that I’ve ever known. My first year at Deer Park I had to walk to school, which in and of itself wasn’t that big of a problem, except during the winters. I told him that I wasn’t going to be able to make it to jazz practice for a few days until I could go shopping for some winter school clothes. Mr. Belote went into his office and came out with a winter coat that I could use. In addition to all of that, he is truly an excellent teacher. Whenever there was a problem, he was there to talk and vent to, and only rarely would those problems be about band, or even school in general. He’s helped me grow as a musician, a student, and a person. I am sad to see him go, but I have hope for the music program. Mr. Belote helped the band become great, and although his leaving is a great loss, the students enrolled in the Deer Park High School band are not done growing as musicians.

All of your students, including me, are going to miss you, Mr. Belote. I hope you find the time with your family, you’ve always been desiring. Best of luck in your new teaching job; your new students don’t know how incredibly lucky they are.

Notes From the Students

“Thank you. It is a simple but meaningful phrase that can be said by all band students who were taught by Mr. Belote. His sacrifices to his students were never unnoticed, especially when it came to his family. He is an outstanding teacher and his love for music and care for students made band a fun place to be. He has personally impacted my life and has put me on a musical path. To his new students, you are getting one heck of a teacher!” – Ainsley Helm, band student.

“Thank you for being such an influence for me in pursuing music” – Trevin Cassles, Drum Major.

“He’s extremely rad, he always puts the needs of his students first” – Jared Lee, former band student. 

“The program he built was spectacular. With what little time he had at Deer Park, what he accomplished was amazing. Everyone who knew him was thankful to have him in the community. He still inspires the band, and especially me, even though he’s not the band director anymore. I’m glad he and his family are growing together, and I hope to see him around.” – Cory Root, Center Snare.

“I call myself extremely lucky to have met such an amazing role model for my musical education. If it wasn’t for Mr.Belote I wouldn’t be half the musician I am today. He’s such a great person to call my friend! Thank you for being such a hard-working teacher! We all love you and are extremely proud!”- Jacob Dickerson, former Center Snare. 

“Mr. Belote had to be one of my favorite teachers. He always put his efforts into making band fun and something that everyone enjoyed. He planned so many fun, entertaining, and educational trips. I hope he has a great time at his new job and inspires so many more young kids as he has here in Deer Park. We will miss you as a teacher and as a friend.”- Kylee Krous, band student. 

“Mr.Belote was an inspiring teacher and always encouraged us to do bigger and better things. wish him the best of luck in his new endeavors.” – Tawnee Dean, former band student.

“Mr.Belote was a fun teacher and was always willing to work with students if they had jobs and other extra activities. He was also involved with their personal lives and made sure he supported the students.”- Beth Dean, band student. 

“With all the amazing memories I have with Mr. Belote it is so hard to say goodbye. It isn’t a forever goodbye, but it’s for a little while at least. you have been one of my greatest supporters and most understanding teachers I have ever had. You offered a hug and a good pep talk whenever I most needed them. There is absolutely no chance that I will ever forget you and the impact you have made on my life. Don’t forget you have a family over at Deer Park High School, no matter what. You’ve changed a lot of the students’ lives. Love you and miss you Mr.B.” Jenna Petroske, band student.  

“He put a lot of effort into the band, and he really cared about the band. The band is truly going to miss him.”-Adam Olinger, band student. 

“I have never met a man who loved his job more than Mr. Belote did. At a pancake breakfast, the Deer Park Choir hosted, Mr. Belote accompanied them. One number they sang was ‘In The Jungle’ from The Lion King, Mr. Belote was playing oil drums and steel pans. He was jumping around like a kid would, all the while the biggest smile on his face. He is truly happy when making music. A new era of Deer Park band will start this year, as Mr. Belote is moving his career closer to home. I am sad to see him leave out music program. Any student who is taught by Mr. Belote is one I consider lucky.” – Carmen Kiewert, band student. 

“Belote was an awesome teacher I had through my whole band career. He always pushed me to strive for my best and always gave me a helping hand whenever my instrument was acting up (which it did a lot). He always believed in everyone, even when you didn’t think you could. He is an amazing teacher and just what Deer Park needed to get back into marching shows.” -Cortney Stockman, former band student.

“I first [met] Mr. Belote 8 years ago in 5th grade back when I couldn’t hold a trombone right or play a B-flat scale. That was back before the marching show, and the jazz band was just a small combo band. Now we have over 50 kids involved in the High School band. We’ve had the opportunity to travel to multiple universities to play in festivals, we got to travel down to Disneyland to perform. I want to thank him for making me the trombone player I am today. I was able to improve a lot, thanks to him. I wish you the best of luck in your new job.” – Zac Hill, band student. 

“You are the reason I got into band and percussion. I’ll cherish every memory we’ve made throughout the 6 years you’ve taught me music. Hopefully, you’ll be able to come to pep band games and say hi. We’ll all miss you, Belote.” – Adam Harris, drumline. 

“I love the time and energy he put into teaching. You could tell he loved the band and his job. His new students will be so lucky to have the best band teacher ever.” – Cristina Hodgson, band. 

“We love you, Belote.” – Everyone.

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