Saturday, October 10, 2009

I interrupt this blog to bring you Sad, sad news

Marching band season is in full swing. You can't pass a high school in the afternoon without seeing a couple of things:

Football teams practicing

Marching bands creating formations while color guard throws their rifles and carries their silks. And every Tuesday evening or Saturday finds stadiums filled with marching bands from near and far along with family and friends to cheer them on to victory.

Today was one such Saturday in Pocatello, Idaho. American Fork, Utah Marching Cavemen took 1st place. They usually do. They are good. No, they are better than good- they are one of the best at what they do. They work hard and long and perfect and hone their craft long after others would have quit.

I have watched them drill before a competition and it never ceases to impress and amaze me. It is no wonder they marched in the Macey's Thanksgiving day parade. And the Inaguration of George W. Bush. And always take 1st place in almost every competition.

But tonight. Tonight I am sitting here stunned. Saddened. In shock and despair. The one thing that every single parent of a marching band member dreads happened tonight to the AF Marching Band as they made their way home, high with the thrill of victory and a job well performed.

On the way home, one of their 4 buses rolled, killing one adult staff member. 12 students were life flighted to a hospital and others were put on a bus to go to a hospital to be treated for wounds. A couple of them were trapped in the bus for a couple of hours before they were able to get them out.

Prayers for all members of the band, their families, the family of the instructor killed.

This touches all of us involved in marching band, because whether we march against a band or not, we are all one big family and pull for and cheer for each other.

AF Marching Cavemen,

May you soon take the field in competition.

add to kirtsy


Jeri said...

Ya - I am totally in shock. I marched with the AF band for 3 years. All of my bros and sisters (except one) marched with the band for 3 years. I was a junior the first year we went tot eh competition up in Pocatello. I am still reeling from the news. The woodwind instructor who died was the drum major one of the years my sister was in the band. Just a tragic tragic thing!

loretta said...

Morgan had only been home from this competition for about 1/2 an hour when she started getting the texts that this had happened. She is having a hard time with having just been there and competed with them, what if it had been us, etc.....The instructor was Drew's roommates high school band teacher.

Our hearts are with the families.

Noelle said...

I read the article today. It's so sad...

Cami said...

This has been a concern of mine for years.....why are there no seatbelts on buses? Why! It's a state law. The most important people in our lives ride those buses on a daily basis....we, as their parents assume responsibility for their well being by enforcing the law of the land that tells us to make them wear seat belts, yet, the government sustained school busing system does not require or even provide the opportunity for our children to wear seat belts. With the exception of the special needs buses that are required to provide seat belts AND car other buses in the school system have them. Just a pet peeve. I hate buses. Whenever possible, I drive myself and follow the bus. A lot of parents don't have that option. So sorry to hear about this. Makes my heart hurt for them all.

Sandra said...

While I have long agreed with you, Cami, seat belts would have made no difference for the instructor in this case. They would have made a difference for the 40+ students that were injured, but she would have still died.

When the bus driver began to pass out, the instructor jumped up and tried to take the wheel to get the bus back under control. When it rolled, she was thrown out, causing her death. So even if there had been seat belts, she would not have been wearing hers at the time.

Cami said...

Yes. I heard it on the news. Still. I bet that a high percentage of people hurt or killed on buses over the years could have been prevented by seat belt use.

Very sad about the instructor. Very heroic thing to attempt.

Heather B. Moore said...

This was heartbreaking.