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The Viewfinder: Ferriday director strikes up the band

FERRIDAY — For the past three years David Turner has been directing the Ferriday marching band.

“It’s been a journey,” Turner said.

The Ferriday marching band is made up of several different schools: Ferriday High School, Ferriday Auxiliary, Ferriday Junior High and Ferriday Upper Elementary, representatives of every age group.

Turner said he has the same hopes for all of his students.

“I just want them to be first in life,” Turner said. “Along with teaching them music, it’s about teaching them discipline.”

Turner himself graduated from Ferriday High School in 2008. Now, instead of performing, Turner said he enjoys watching his students grow.

“What stands out to me is the smile on their faces when they learn something difficult,” Turner said.

For several students it’s also about having the community and social interaction.

Junior, Dajane Washington, 16, began playing the trumpet three years ago.

“The people are my favorite part about coming here,” Washington said. “These people are all my friends.”

Being in the band provides outlets for many students, Turner said.

“All of them don’t come from perfect homes,” he said. “It gives them a getaway. Even the ones who do come from perfect homes, it gives them the opportunity to grow, learn, win and cry with each other.”

The band’s first performance will be in the Prince Hall Day Celebration parade Sept. 9 in Monroe and the first home football game will be Sept. 14 at Ferriday High School.

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