Melissa's Story

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An idealistic spirit, a fiercely passionate teacher, a dynamic presence, Melissa Marie Lock Straw, 47, died October 29, 2017, in Columbia, Mo.
Melissa was born March 8, 1970, in Carrollton, Mo., the youngest of five children to C.R. Bob Lock and Shirley Wilson Lock. She received a Bachelor's and Master's of Music Education degree from MU.
As a college freshman in University Singers, Melissa met Michael Straw, a doctoral student from Carthage. After dating for almost 4 years, she proposed in the sculpture garden of the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, in KC. They were together for almost 30 years. Their children Matthew, 20, is a junior Music and Philosophy major at the Oberlin College and Conservatory, in Ohio, and Margaret, 18, is a freshman studying English and Cultural Studies at Macalester College, in St. Paul, Minn.
Maestra, Melissa Straw, used this mantra in class and rehearsal every day: "Say something nice to someone. Do something nice for someone. Live in harmony with the world!" May it be so!
Online condolences and information about her exceptional teaching and musical career in the Columbia community may be found in her complete obituary online with the Heartland Cremation Society at
Published on December 17, 2017
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