Leckrone recovering from heart surgery

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)---The man behind the UW-Madison band is back on campus after having surgery.

80-year-old Mike Leckrone said he had double-bypass heart surgery on January 24. He returned to the Mead Witter School of Music on March 15 to rehearse his 300-member Varsity Band for two hours before spring break.

"I'm certainly not the first person who's been fortunate enough to have this kind of surgery," Leckrone. "I had full confidence in my team at UW Hospital, and I'm even more impressed with them now that I know them better. They are all amazing people, real heroes. But at the time, I didn't want anyone to worry about me."

UW-Madison said Leckrone will not travel with the band to New York City for the NCAA Tournament games. He plans to travel with the Badgers if they play in Phoenix.

Other band department personnel covered for him while he was absent.

"I'm anxious to get back, of course. Besides tournaments we've got the big concert coming up," said Leckrone.

Leckrone became the conductor of the UW marching band in 1969. The Varsity Band performs at football, hockey, basketball and other UW sports events.

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