The Douglass High School Marching Band showed up at The Black Chronicle to surprise Russell M. Perry and to serenade him for his support.
The band—all decked out in their uniforms—showed up last week and performed a variety of selections outside the Chronicle Building.
Mr. Perry, a graduate of Douglass High before he went on to attend the University of Maryland Eastern Shore—is publisher of the newspaper and chairman of Perry Publishing & Broadcasting.
Sometime ago, he donated to Douglass High a sum that was used to purchase uniforms for the marching band.
The band members wanted to thank him. Thus, the surprise serenade last week.
They wanted to thank him for “what he does in the community and for his support of Douglass High,” a spokesman for the band said.
Larry D. Naff, another supporter of the school, started a fundraiser for the band. He thought the band needed new uniforms to replace uniforms that had had their 25th birthday.
Mr. Perry’s donations made the uniform replacement a reality.
“This was the right thing to do and Russell Perry made it happen,” Mr. Naff said.
“With Douglass being his alma mater, he immediately got on board,” Mr. Naff said, referring to Mr. Perry’s support.
“He’s been a very great advocate to the school,” Mr. Naff went on. “We just wanted to just show our appreciation of him.
“There are people who will say they’ll do as much and won’t do anything.”
“We and the band just thought this was a good time to pay tribute to him, not only for what he’s done for the school and the bnd, but for all that he has done in the past,” Mr. Naff continued.
Before the serenade by the band, Mr. Naff said he consulted with Douglass High’s principal and the band director and they both “got on board” with the idea.
“With their help, we made it happen,” Mr. Naff remarked.
“Of course,” Mr. Naff said, “the kids were excited to do this.
“And we did it.”