Marching band plans trip to France


Tiger Paw Yearbook

Carrying their banner, Marching band marches in the homecoming parade on Sept. 8.

OHS band has travelled all over the country — from Georgia, to Colorado, to Hawaii. And in 2019, they will go international for the first time — to France.

Because of their participation at the President’s Cup in Washington, D.C. in April 2017, the band was invited to take part in the 75th anniversary of D-Day in Normandy, France in June of 2019. There, the band will be honoring World War II American Veterans.

“A lot of those veterans are passing away… There’s not many of those individuals left and I think that if we can connect with those people (it will be really special),” said OHS band director Vance Brakefield. “We’re living history, and I think that’s really special.”

The band will have several performances on the trip. This will include playing at the American Cemetery at Brittany, at Omaha Beach, and being part of the D-Day Memorial Parade in St. Mere Eglise. In addition, they will have the opportunity to play at the Luxembourg Gardens in Paris.

“A lot of my ancestors were in the military and Army and Navy, and it will be a nice way to remember them,” said Sophie Kettenbrink (9).

Along with all of their performances, the band will get to learn much about both French and American history, and they plan to see Mont St. Michel, Utah Beach, and the numerous tourist attractions that Paris has to offer, like the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre.

“I’m a huge traveler,” Kettenbrink said. “And getting to go (to France) with 100 of my best friends will be unbelieveable.”

The members of the band attending this trip are looking forward to this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

“I’m overwhelmed to have an experience like this,” said Kevin Wich (11). “I’m proud to represent America instead of just Oakville High School.”