Tallahassee, FL–Civil rights attorney Ben Crump was a surprise guest at the Florida A&M Marching Band camp. He currently resides in Tallahassee and has been on the board of the FAMU band scholarship fund for some time now. Not only was Crump there to watch the show of the more than 360 campers who attended the week-long camp this year, but he injected himself in the situation. Crump donated $10,000 to the band camp to assist students who have financial obstacles to attend the camp.
After Crump was announced by FAMU Director of Bands, Dr. Shelby Chipman, he made the announcement to thunderous applause from the audience.
“To Dr. Chipman, not only a great band director but a better human being…let’s give it up for Dr. Chipman, a man of vision following in the legacy of Dr. William P. Foster. To all of your staff and administration, I know that it is a labor of love, but you need the financial support,” Crump said.
Crump poses with Marching ‘100″ announcer Joe Bullard and Bullard’s grandson Donovan Parrish.
Ben Crump cites legacy of the fallen
“When we talk about standing up for our children and speaking up for our children and fighting for our children it can’t just be with lip service. It has to be with action. When I look at the children, I see Trayvon Martin, I see Breyonna Taylor, I see Ahmaud Arbery, and I think what would have become of them had they not been taken from this Earth far too soon.”
“In their names and in their legacy, I try to give back to the next generation of the greatest band on planet Earth, the Marching ‘100.’ When I look at these young people and what you all are doing with this band, what you’re really doing is connecting the past with the present so we can conquer the future,” Crump said.
After a few photos, Crump pulled a check out of his wallet and made his donation on the spot. It was a total surprise to Chipman who has been diligent in providing scholarships for access to the band camp to those in need.
“Each year we provide scholarships for students to return to camp. Dr. Julian E. White, the Marching “100” director before me is who the scholarships are named after,” Chipman said.
“One person from each section is awarded a scholarship, totaling ten. These are rising seniors and it is an incentive to finish strong academically and coming to FAMU and getting an early start.”