WHS Band Proudly Salutes Veterans with First Annual Concert

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Sabrina Abesamis

Sabrina Abesamis, Editor-in-Chief

The Wellington High School Wind Ensemble performed its first annual “A Salute to Veterans” concert Monday, November 11, in the WHS Amphitheater.  Presented to a large audience that included many local veterans, the concert was a successful tribute to all the men and women who have served this country.

“We wanted to do this concert as a gift to all our veterans and active servicemen,” Ms. Mary Oser, band director, said. “It’s not enough to thank them for everything they do, but hopefully it was a nice, fun hour for them to enjoy some music.”

Fortunately, all those in attendance, including Tom Wenham, a veteran of the Korean War, certainly did enjoy the concert. “It couldn’t have been better,” gushed Wenham. “I’m proud [as a veteran] to be here.”

With classics such as “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” to upbeat numbers like “Lassus Trombone,” the concert featured a wide range of patriotic songs. The latter song featured the WHS “Brass to the Bone” Trombone Section, whose members danced while playing the song, much to the delight of the entire audience.

The concert also featured guest soloist Paul Magersuppe. As a former middle school band director, the saxophonist gladly agreed to participate, playing the “Harlem Nocturne” with the rest of the ensemble.

“Mrs. Oser graciously asked me to play along with the Wolverine Band and I said ‘Of course, I’d love to,’” Magersuppe said.

The concert went on without hitch, most likely due to the many practices and tireless effort the students put into preparing for the concert.

“We practiced everyday in class and had a lot of outside practice before this [including] a really long rehearsal [the morning] before the show,” Michael Leatherman, bassist, explained.

Apparently in the end, though, all the hard work was worth it. “My dad was a veteran so it always feels nice to show appreciation for other people like that,” Leatherman said.

Although the concert was free, the band also collected donations for the charity Forgotten Soldiers Outreach. The funds collected will go to the Lake Worth-based organization, which ships care packages to military men and women serving overseas. Those interested can still donate at www.forgottensoldiers.org.