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When the Marching Eagles of Civic Memorial High School arrived at camp on Tuesday, Aug. 4, they were stunned with the news that their long-time band director, Lori Crain, is moving on to pursue a job with another school district.

“There wasn’t a dry eye in the band room on Tuesday,” Crain said. “but there was not a doubt in my mind that I was going to finish the week out with my band.”

Crain refused to let the camp be cut short as soon as she broke the news to CMHS’s principal, Justin Newell. Since she is no longer employed by the school district, she agreed to be unpaid for the remainder of the week of camp. Crain is going on to teach Kindergarten through 8th grade music education in Belleville, Ill.

“To do this, without pay, just to see us through to the end of camp, is truly amazing,” said senior drum major Megan Huang, “We’re so sad to see her go.”

 In show business, the phrase “the show must go on” come to mind when Crain conducted the rest of the week’s camp. The band, composed of around 80 woodwinds, percussionists, brass players, and color guard members practiced their marching skills at CMHS’s track around the football field. The band’s parade tune, “Cuban Coffee,” has some Latin tones that the audience in future parades and competitions are sure to tap their toes to.

 The Marching Eagles plan to hit the field with their field show routine that is set to John Williams’ famous Star Wars works. This choice in music for this year will be a testament that, although the organization is going through a lot of changes, that the force is still strong with the Marching Eagles.

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 Crain is optimistic that whomever the district chooses as her replacement should fit in with the organization quite well.

 “The district has been keeping me in tune with who they have been interviewing, and it’s comforting to know that whoever is filling my shoes will have experience with high school bands,” Crain said.

  It goes without saying that Lori Crain will leave a large hole in the hearts of her current and former students; however, her legend will live in every practice and every song performed from this point on.

 “I am sad about leaving, but I think this change is a good thing,” Crain said.

 CMHS Marching Eagles band camp will conclude this Friday, Aug. 7.

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