Memorial Day weekend is a time to remember those who have died defending America. Stamford residents celebrated with those currently defending the country when the Parris Island Marine Band performed at Westhill High School on Saturday night.
The 47-piece band led by Chief Warrant Officer Joshua A. Stone played 14 songs for the packed auditorium. Highlights included the Star Spangled Banner, as every person in the audience stood and sang along, and John Philip Sousas The Thunderer, as the percussion section came out to the front of the stage to perform.
Among the attendees was U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., who shared his appreciation for the music and the band's visit to Stamford. The senator, who went through boot camp at Parris Island, S.C., did not remember the band or their music.
Sand flies, and drill sergeants? Yes. Music? No, Blumenthal said, laughing.
The Parris Island Marine Band was formed in 1915 when the U.S. Navy transferred Marine Corps training to the South Carolina town. The band performs at more than 100 events a year and has several different ensembles, including a concert band, marching band, jazz ensemble and brass quintet.
The Parris Island Marine Band will play again during the Memorial Day parade in Stamford on Sunday. The parade steps off on North Street at noon and will march to Veterans Park by about 1:30 p.m.
Saturdays concert was free. It was sponsored by Stamfords Patriotic and Special Events Committee and the Marine Corps League Lock City Detachment No. 910 .
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