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School band director reflects on Wisconsin marching attack

On the night of the Waukesha Christmas Parade attack, Sarah Wehmeier-Aparicio said she realized something was wrong as soon as the music stopped playing. “Some kids stopped playing and I thought, ‘Why don’t they play? “. “That’s when the screaming started and I turned around and he started driving past the band.” She was referring to Darrell Brooks Jr., who police said drove past the parade in an SUV. Six people died. More than 60 people were injured. She said she watched as the SUV sped past a few inches from her, then heard gunshots, as police opened fire on the vehicle. “The kids were running, but we still had a few on the ground and then a police officer came running and said, ‘Shoot shot, everyone ran,’” Wehmeier said. many students are injured, unable to move, just lying on the street and they just feel so helpless there.” Wehmeier said: “I remember I had to make a choice: I would be a mother right away. now or will i become a band teacher? I had to be a band teacher in that moment.” “Just check out the store, ‘How are you guys?’ Next store, ‘How are you guys?’ Then on the street,” Wehmeier said. Wehmeier said community members trained in first aid helped injured students, while waiting for emergency responders. She said 12 students The WISN sister station was there when the last student, Erick Tiegs, 16, returned home from the hospital on Tuesday. He was playing a game of trombone when the driver was in the car. The SUV hit him. Wehmeier said some of the student gear has the potential to protect their bodies from serious harm. , the doctor said it probably saved (the student’s) life because of the way it wrapped around him, it created a barrier that protected him when the car passed,” Wehmeier said. On Monday, students took time to work through their trauma by speaking in groups, using student services counselors, and getting involved. Support flooded into their schools. Handmade music, handwritten notes, flowers and gifts poured in from all over the country for the Waukesha South marching band. One day, Comfort dogs also gathered outside the school to help students open up more. “I know some students who were in the back of the band, they were really fighting for, ‘If I had been the only place, it would have been me’ and ‘I should have been there.’ survivor’s guilt is so much more, they wish they’d stood in their classmates’ place so they could take that for them,” Wehmeier said. most. She also said starting to play together again as a band helped the students return to a sense of normalcy. She said once her students learn Dancing Grannies, another group that attacked in the parade, planning to march in a parade this weekend, the band wants to rehearse. “For me personally, this is something that someone did to us and so it made me feel stronger to want to get back to normal,” Wehmeier said. “I mentioned to them about Dancing Grannies and they said, ‘You know what, we want to play tomorrow.'” Wehmeier said. Wehmeier said life experiences helped prepare her for the job. “I’ve been through other traumas in my life, so I know, even though things are going to be tough right now, there’s going to be some light at the end of this tunnel,” Wehmeier said. “My students haven’t had that life experience and I have a really special honor to be with them to help them through this.” When asked what she was thinking about right now, Wehmeier said she was wondering how this could have happened. “How many other people are crossing the cracks with mental illness and trauma in their lives that have allowed them to get to this point where they think driving a car through a parade is a good thing? What can we learn as a society, says Wehmeier.

On the night of the Waukesha Christmas Parade attack, Sarah Wehmeier-Aparicio said she realized something was wrong as soon as the music stopped playing.

“Some kids stopped playing and I thought, ‘Why don’t they play? “. “That’s when the screaming started and I turned around and he started driving past the band.”

She was referring to Darrell Brooks Jr., who police said drove through the parade in an SUV. Six people died. More than 60 people were injured.

She said she watched as the SUV sped past a few inches from her, then heard gunshots, as police opened fire on the vehicle.

“The kids were running, but we still had a few on the ground and then a police officer came running and said, ‘Shoot shot, everyone ran,’” Wehmeier said. many students are injured, unable to move, just lying on the street and they just feel so helpless when they’re there.”

The remaining students were scattered among the storefronts, all while Wehmeier’s family was elsewhere along the parade route.

“I remember I had to make a choice: would I be a mother now or would I become a band teacher? I had to become a band teacher in that moment,” Wehmeier said.

“Just check out the store, ‘How are you guys?’ Next store, ‘How are you guys?’ Then on the street,” Wehmeier said.

Wehmeier said community members trained in first aid helped injured students, while waiting for emergency responders. She said 12 of her students received medical treatment.

The WISN sister station was there when the last student, 16-year-old Erick Tiegs, returned home from the hospital on Tuesday. He was playing a game of trombone when the driver in the SUV hit him.

Wehmeier says some of the student gear has the ability to protect their bodies from serious harm.

“We heard our sousaphone, this is the marching version of the tuba, the doctor said it probably saved (the student’s) life because of the way it wrapped around him, it created a barrier that protected him. when the car passed,” Wehmeier said. “He said, ‘Thank God for that sousaphone, it saved your life.”

Wehmeier said that since returning to school on Monday, students have taken time to work through their trauma by talking in groups, using student service counselors and receiving overwhelming support. their school.

Hundreds of handcrafted signs, handwritten notes, flowers and gifts poured in from around the country for the Waukesha South marching band.

Comfort dog also gather outside of school one day to help students open up more.

“I know some students who were behind the band, they really struggled because, ‘If I had been the only place, it would have been me’ and ‘I should have been there.’ And the survivor’s guilt is so much more, that they wish they’d stood in the shoes of their classmates so they could take that for them,” Wehmeier said.

Wehmeier said talking to each other about the trauma that day helped the team process the most. She also said starting to play together again as a band helped the students return to a sense of normalcy.

She says when her students learn dancing granny, Another group attacked in the parade, planning to march in a parade this weekend, the band wanted to rehearse again.

“For me personally, this is something that someone did to us and so it made me feel stronger to want to get back to normal,” Wehmeier said. “I mentioned to them about Dancing Grannies and they said, ‘You know what, we want to play tomorrow.'”

“(The Dancing Grannies) their ability to recover the amount of people they’ve lost from their group and their willingness to do a parade again this weekend is incredible and one,” said Wehmeier. great example”. “I know our students have been really inspired by them.”

Wehmeier said life experience helped prepare her for the job.

“I’ve been through other traumas in my life, so I know, even though things are going to be tough right now, there’s going to be some light at the end of this tunnel,” Wehmeier said. “My students haven’t had that life experience and I have a really special honor to be with them to help them through this.”

When asked what she was thinking about right now, Wehmeier said she was wondering how this could have happened.

“How many other people are crossing the cracks with mental illness and trauma in their lives that have allowed them to get to this point where they think driving a car through a parade is a good thing? What can we learn as a society, says Wehmeier.

https://www.kcra.com/article/school-band-director-reflects-on-wisconsin-parade-attack/38428696 School band director reflects on Wisconsin marching attack

JOE HERNANDEZ

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