University of Michigan marching band memorializes the victims of 9/11

Thousands gather at the University of Michigan stadium to honor the people killed in the terrorists attacks that occured on Sept. 11, 2001. (Photo by Emma Marion)

Two decades ago, our country reached havoc. 

Two decades ago, our country became insecure and frightened. 

Two decades ago, the Pentagon, the World Trade Center and a hijacked plane changed the world forever.

On September 11th, 2001, we lost many of our fellow Americans. Some in the line of duty and others in line for coffee. 

As many college football seasons are underway, we still remember the people affected on this day 20 years ago.

For the University of Michigan football team, this was their opportunity to get back on their field.

“It’s a huge deal for us and the team,”  said Lauren Mckenzie, a 2019 graduate of Monroe County and now a piccolo player in the Michigan Marching Band.

The show started off with the pregame remembering the fallen people, followed by a flag that covered the entirety of the football field.

The MMB used the entire halftime show to commemorate the events of  9/11.

The entire stadium darkened as the marching band entered the field. The members of the MMB were cloaked in white, and their headgear started to glow.

The 400 piece band created many formations with a light show that included the United States of America, the American flag, the word HEROS, among many more. 

I overheard an excited fan say that it was better than fireworks. 

Upon arrival, we paid a visit to Revelli hall. This is the rehearsal hall where all the music is prepared for the MMB.

At the steps to the hall, an enormous crowd of students and fans had formed to watch the exit cadence from the very talented drumline of the MMB. 

This particular feature included nineteen University of Michigan students who each auditioned for their spot.

The athleticism of these students always blows my mind. The way they march down the steps of the hall in complete synchronization has got to take a lot of concentration and training.

After the drumline finishes their jig, it’s the rest of the band’s turn to exit from Revelli Hall and into the streets.

The crowd of fans follow the band as they march to the field at the Big House.

This was my first time attending a Michigan Football game and in complete honesty, I went for the sole purpose of watching the marching band.

While the first two quarters felt like they took forever, the anticipation and hype just made the march on so much better.

The band entered while the announcer and crowd paid respects to all affected on 9/11.

The announcer introduced individuals from our home state that were lost in the tragedy. 

I wasn’t alive on 9/11, so I don’t have an intimate remembrance of the day like many people alive at the time, but this tribute helped me get a glimpse of the emotions people were feeling on that day.

“The day was beautiful. The sky was bluer and the birds were singing. None of us knew the horror that was to come,” said Jaymi Yettaw, who was a college student at the time who also attended the MMB halftime show.

The emotion that was floating throughout the stadium was overwhelming. In a world of such madness, I will remember this day for the togetherness and brotherhood we shared.

The tribute put on by the MMB was truly amazing and well deserved for the people affected by the traumatic day.

Click here to watch the MMB show.