The Veteran's Band of Corpus Christi recently represented the city at the deactivation of the USS City of Corpus Christi in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The ceremony was held on May 30 at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam after more than 33 years of service to the US Navy.
The Veteran's Band were invited to take part and perform in the ceremony. Members of the band participated in different fundraising events on top of the normal responsibilities that the band has during the previous month. As a nonprofit organization the band raised much of the $100,000 needed to cover the expenses of the once in a lifetime trip.
Band director Ram Chavez wished to express gratitude for the citizens of Corpus Christi. "The people from Corpus really helped us out. A lot of people helped us and we had great support from the community," said Chavez.
During the two-day event, the Veteran's Band was invited to eat dinner in the galley of the submarine more than 400 feet below the ocean. Several of the band members and supporters that went on the trip were amazed at the level of professionalism displayed by the active duty sailors. "The caliber of the young men on the sub was impressive," said Veteran's Band supporter Gary White. White accompanied the band on the trip to Hawaii and also added, "the sailors ate good, they have a five star galley on the sub.
The band left the tropical weather of Hawaii and returned to Corpus Christi on a stormy Thursday, June 2 afternoon because they still have commitments and events to be played. The following morning was the Midway Commemoration event at the Lexington and the band was not going to miss it.