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Berry Tramel  


OSU football: A&M’s band at Lewis Field

by Berry Tramel Published: September 22, 2011

If you’ve followed me for awhile, you know I love the Texas A&M band. I don’t know what kind of football contender you’re getting, SEC, but you’re getting one heck of a band. Hey, Aggies, how about taking the A&M football squad and leaving the mighty marchers of Aggieland here in Middle America? Oh well.

I got a nice email from an Aggie band alum on Thursday. Nathan Piwonka thanked me for all I’ve written about the A&M band over the years and sent along this correspondence:

“As an Aggie (class of 2001), and former Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band member, I’ve always enjoyed your respect for the Aggie Band. Although I loved playing on Kyle Field, it was always special to me to visit some of the other stadiums and bring our tradition to them. It was during many of these events that all the early mornings and continuous trials of a Corps lifestyle were made worth every penny! I want to share with you an e-mail that was sent to the Aggie Band and distributed to all of us back in 1998, after our game with OSU (then called Lewis Field). I’ve saved it all these years as a reminder that you never know what your actions, no matter how insignificant they may seem at the time, can mean to another. I have included the text below.

“This past Saturday (October 31st), I took my mother to the Oklahoma State/Texas A&M game. My mother was so excited, not to see Oklahoma State, or even the game, though I am an OSU grad. She wanted nothing more that to see the A&M Band. We went up early and watched the homecoming parade at 9am, which she really enjoyed as she loves watching a parade, especially the marching bands. She was hoping that the A&M band would be in the parade, but really enjoyed it anyway. We spent the rest of the day roaming around the campus and visiting … resting frequently as she is almost 68.

“We arrived at the game a full two hours before kickoff and sat in the constant drizzle waiting for game time. We had what we thought were terrible seats (Section R), all the way down on one end. You should have seen the look of joy on my mother’s face as the A&M band members started coming in to sit in the section right down below us.

“You see, my mother is deaf. She came to see your band, though she would never be able to hear them. But, thanks to the rickety old stands of Lewis Field, my mother could feel them, and even though she’s been deaf for some twenty years, she still remembered the cadence. I can’t thank your band enough for how happy you made my mother. She had waited her whole life to see your band, and will remember it always.” An Aggie fan ( now both of them), Randy Alderman

Wow. What a great story. Might not have happened at Boone Pickens’ palace, but the old Lewis Field bleachers came through in a big-time way.

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by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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