FAMU President Silences Band

May 14, 2012

FAMU silences band during hazing death investigation.

As Florida A&M is dealing with the hazing death of a member of its famed Marching 100 Band, university president James Ammons announced earlier today that the band will remain silent through the 2012-13 academic year.  This announcement was made in the aftermath of drum major Robert Champion’s senseless death back in November.  After a football game in Orlando, Champion was beaten badly during a hazing incident on the band bus.  There is speculation that Champion was targeted because he was against hazing, was homosexual, and was a candidate for chief drum major.

Champion’s death forced the school to immediately suspend the band, forced the resignation of band director Julian White, who has been with the band for 40 years, and forced two music professors to resign.  As a result of the beating death, 13 people were charged with 11 facing felony hazing charges which caries a penalty of up to six years.  

The Marching 100 Band is one of the countries most prestigious college bands playing in high profile events from presidential inaugurations to Super Bowls.  The band was the inspiration for the movie Drumline

There is still no timetable as to when the band will be reinstated.

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