McCrory ‘hand-picked’ Marching Mountaineers for parade

Joshua Farmer

Appalachian State University’s marching band performed in Gov. Pat McCrory’s Inaugural Parade in downtown Raleigh Jan. 15.

The Marching Mountaineers were “hand-picked by the governor himself,” according to Associate Band Director Kevin Richardson.

Chancellor Kenneth Peacock originally received the invitation to his office.

“What an honor it is for Appalachian’s Marching Mountaineers to be invited to participate in this historic event,” Peacock said. “I am grateful to the many alumni and university friends who have provided the necessary funding to make this dream of marching at Gov. McCrory’s inaugural parade a reality for our outstanding band.”

Out of the three schools picked from the UNC-System, the Marching Mountaineers were the only band to attend, Richardson said.

The then-gubernatorial candidate McCrory saw the Marching Mountaineers perform at a football game in October when he joined Peacock in conducting the fight song at the end of the third quarter, Richardson said.

Senior music education major Michelle Leach said she felt “incredibly honored” when she found out the band had been requested to march.

“As a senior, this was my final event with the band, and I think it was a great ending to what has been a worthwhile adventure,” Leach said.

The band’s expenses will be paid for through Chancellor Kenneth Peacock’s office, Richardson said.

“That’s how much it means to Chancellor Peacock that we be there, which is great,” Richardson said.

Story: STEPHANIE SANSOUCY, Senior News Reporter