NBC10 - Doug Shimell
A Colorad high school band will be participating in the Mummers parade this New Year's Day.
A trip that was planned months in advance is now a major step towards healing for a Colorado high school band still coping with a traumatizing event that made headlines nationwide.
On December 13, 17-year-old Claire Davis was shot in the head by her classmate at Arapahoe High School in Centennial, Colorado. She died from her injuries over a week later. Police say her shooter, 18-year-old Karl Pierson, later killed himself.
As they continue to deal with the tragedy, members of the school’s marching band are undergoing an end of the year trip that was scheduled long before the shooting. The marching band is now in Philadelphia and will kick off the Mummers Parade on New Year’s Day.
While touring the Mummers museum with 37 of his band members on Monday, Arapahoe High Marching Band Director Shawn Funk insisted they were focusing on the parade and their time in Philly.
“I’m not here to talk about anything else that happened at Arapahoe,” Funk said. “We want them to be excited about the trip and we want them to experience this musically as well as historically and culturally.”
The band tried on Mummers costumes and learned about the group’s history.
“They’re a very strong people to be able to continue to move on through the holidays,” said Mummers Museum President Rusty Martz. “We hope that the parade brings a little bit of merriment to their holiday season.”
After a difficult 2013, Martz is hoping their appearance will not only mark a new year but also a new beginning for the band and the community they represent.
“Once we experience the parade on Wednesday, I’m sure it’ll take it to a whole new level,” Martz said. “In more ways than one!”