FORT SILL, Okla. (TNN) -The 77th Army Band, or The Pride of Fort Sill originated in 1907, and are still marching strong today.
In this A Day in the Life segment, 7News Anchor Makenzie Burk learned how many hours go into keeping the band in tip top shape.
“We are the Pride of Fort Sill,” said band commander Richard Townes. “We’re Fort Sill’s ambassadors to the community. And we also carry on the legacy and traditions of the military here on Fort Sill.”
Like most of the bands members, percussionist Staff Sgt. Adam Walton has been playing an instrument for years.
“I started in 5th grade, like a lot of music students,” said Walton. “So I have been playing for many years before I took an audition for the army. And then at that point, it’s just kind of the matter of the needs of the army, and where you’re going to go personnel wise.”
Several hundred hours of work goes into being prepared for any and all events, or missions as they’re called.
“We start learning that at our AIT, the formulas of the army band stuff, but then you just work on it at every post you’re at,” said Walton. “You’re going to be working on marching bands, small ensembles, concert bands. All that stuff is just a continual process for an entire career.”
Walton says aside from the training and troops schooling, the missions they play are his favorite part of being in the army band.
“Like my first band was in Korea, so I got some really cool opportunities to play for the British Embassy and ambassadors and stuff like that,” said Walton. “Then after that I went to Alabama where I was playing for a lot of the tech companies that develop our space and rocket technology and things like that. So it’s a wide variety of missions that you play.”
Band Commander Richard Townes says The Pride of Fort Sill provides a sense of morale to the soldiers on post.
“We get to go out in the community and represent all the great things that are happening here on Fort Sill,” said Townes. “That’s just a very rewarding experience when I can look at people in the eyes and say, ‘We’re from Fort Sill, and we’re here to play for you.’ I think that’s very rewarding.”
Tune in for the next A Day in the Life Segment about the physical therapy clinic at Reynold’s Army Health Clinic, and the importance of rehabilitation after an injury.