Few Members of Rich South Marching Band Set To Leave For London Olympics

RICHTON PARK, Ill. (CBS) — Some members of a south suburban high school marching band leave Tuesday for the London Olympics, but there’s disappointment that not all of them can afford to go.

The Rich South band from Richton Park was invited to perform in the opening ceremonies of the Olympics.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports, members have been trying to raise the money they need for the trip for months, but in the end they met only about 10 percent of their $300,000 goal.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports

Now just 21 of the 109 band members and four adult chaperones are making the trip.

According to the Southtown Star, the trip will cost each student $2,500.

School officials decided to divvy up the total $35,000 raised among all of the students, and those who could cover the rest of the costs of the trip are the ones who will leave for London Tuesday.

“It hurts me that we didn’t get anyone to underwrite the trip because I wanted to take everybody,” band director Y.L. Douglas told the Southtown Star. “The ones who couldn’t go, it’s because financially they weren’t able to hold up the obligation. That’s totally understandable. It’s very difficult these days. But we are blessed to have this opportunity.”

Rich South High School principal Cynthia Hudson said it’s disappointing that most band members have to stay home. She told the Southtown Star, “This small contingent will perform well and make us very proud.”

The students will return from the trip July 30.

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