William DeShazer

Stories and Essays: Marching to Glory

The Marian Catholic Marching Band has been to the Grand Nationals and won more than any other school in America. They have won seven times and are the only school to win three years in a row. This is an essay following them through the State Competition, the Regionals Competition, and the Bands of America Grand Nationals Championships during their 2009 season.

Marian Catholic drum line members Casey Coleman (from let), junior, Conner Johnson, sophomore, and Cameron Ellison, senior, watch the drum majors for their cue during band practice at Marian Catholic High School on Saturday October 31, 2009.
  
Color Guard Director Lamar Branson (top left)  Band Director, Greg Bimm, and Assistant Band Director, Bobby Lambert watch the Marian Catholic Marching Band practice while Drum Major, Diamond Murphy, leads the band in between performances at the 43nd Annual State of Illinois Marching Band Championship at Illinois State University in Normal on Saturday October 24, 2009.
  
Marian Catholic High School Marching Band members Hillary Schmidt (bottom-left), senior, and Easlyn Edwards, junior, relax on the bus after their performance at the Bands of America Regional Championships in Indianapolis, Ind. on Saturday November 7, 2009.
     
  
Trumpet players strip down to their shorts and underwear for the last run through before leaving for the Bands of America Grand National Championships on Wednesday November 11, 2009. The tradition started back in the 1980's and has continued on ever since.
  
Marian Catholic Marching Band Drum Majors Samantha Greene, Diamond Murphy, and Kaitlyn Van Tuyl, say a prayer while other band members warm up before competing in the semi-finals during the Bands of America Grand National Championships at Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday November 14, 2009.
  
Marian Catholic Flautists, Alanna Lovely, (from left) and Lyndia Bissell,  take part in a prayer service with other members of the Marian Catholic Marching Band before the finals in between the Bands of America Grand National Championships on Saturday November 14, 2009. Before the prayer service begins students speak openly about what they've learned and experienced over the marching season.
     
  
Marian Catholic High School color guard member Jasmin Weaver (bottom-right) puts her make-up on with other members of the color guard before the bands final performance at Bands of America Regional Championships on Saturday November 7, 2009.
  
Marian Catholic High School Marching Band sousaphone players break into their group for warm ups before taking the field during 43nd Annual State of Illinois Marching Band Championship at Illinois State University in Normal on Saturday October 24, 2009.
  
Marian Catholic High School Marching Band flautist, Linda Kuersten, gets her ankle wrapped by band parent and doctor, Kevin O'Shea during the 43nd Annual State of Illinois Marching Band Championship at Illinois State University in Normal on Saturday October 24, 2009.
     
  
Marian Catholic Marching Band performs during the preliminaries during the Bands of America Grand National Championships at Lucas Oil Stadium on Friday November 13, 2009.
  
Marian Catholic Marching Band Drum Majors Kaitlyn Van Tuyl, (from left), Diamond Murphy, and Samantha Greene, embrace before taking the field during the semi-finals at the Bands of America Grand National Championships at Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday November 14, 2009.