By BROOKE STEVENSON
Sunday Times Newspapers
WYANDOTTE — After four days in Washington, D.C., and performing in President Barack Obama’s inaugural parade, the Marching Chiefs returned home Wednesday afternoon.
Members of the Roosevelt High School marching band practiced tirelessly for the performance since learning Dec. 5 that they had been chosen from more than 1,300 applicants nationwide and were one of just two Michigan groups to perform.
With Tuesday’s events behind them, members now consider themselves “part of history” for performing in the parade honoring the country’s first African-American president. After receiving protests about the band’s nickname and Indian head logo, members marched with the logo on their uniform sleeves.
“The Chiefs marched proudly as they represented their community, their school, their state, the Wyandot of Anderdon, as well as the Wyandotte Nation of Oklahoma,” Instrumental Music Director Mark D’Angelo said.
During the parade the band played “It’s a Grand Old Flag,” the school’s fight song, “The Victors” and some Motown hits.
The band stood in formation in the cold as the parade began more than two hours late.
“That could not deter the band,” D’Angelo said, “as they performed in high spirits along Pennsylvania Avenue, and for millions and millions of people across numerous channels across the country and around the world.”
After the parade the band performed at the Michigan inaugural dinner dance Tuesday night at the National Museum of American History in Washington.
“The Chiefs are grateful to the many community and alumni supporters that helped financially to make this performance possible for our students,” D’Angelo said.
To make a contribution to the band go to http://music.wyandotte.org.