Thomas H. (Tim) Belk

  • Wednesday November 12, 2014
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Thomas H. (Tim) Belk

July 22, 1941 " October 12, 2014

Thomas H. (Tim) Belk, a resident of San Francisco for more than 40 years and a well-known figure to a wide circle of friends as a professional piano player, died October 12 of complications from a kidney infection. He was 73.

A native of Fort Mill, South Carolina, Mr. Belk moved to San Francisco in the early 1970s to began a career of more than 20 years with the California State Automobile Association. But it was through his piano playing at various locales such as the former Curtain Call in the city's theater district and at the Top of the Mark Hopkins Hotel that many came to know him best. Over the years, many of San Francisco's most prominent socialites would engage him to play his mixture of show tunes and old standards at their social events.

Mr. Belk, who retained a southern accent and was passionate about literature, theater, music, and all of the arts, was a longtime friend of the author Pat Conroy, who based several of the characters in his novels on his long-time acquaintance. Such books included The Lords of Discipline, The Prince of Tides , and South of Broad . Conroy once described Mr. Belk as someone who "would have looked natural with a walk-on part in a Tennessee Williams play."

Mr. Belk held a master's degree in English literature from the University of South Carolina.

He is survived by his former wife, Dianne Cunningham of Fort Mill, South Carolina, and two cousins, Joe Belk of Oakland and John Belk of Atlanta.

Internment will be at the Neptune Society Columbarium in San Francisco where a memorial service will be held Friday, November 14 at 1 p.m. The Columbarium is located at One Loraine Court, just off Geary Boulevard.