UNCC band travels to France for D-Day remembrance

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Members of the UNC Charlotte Marching Band are getting ready for a trip to France -- the only North Carolina school ever invited to represent the United States -- to help mark the 74th anniversary of D-Day, the day the Allied forces invaded France to push back the Nazis in World War II.

UNCC band members were honored as they packed for the trip, which they consider a great honor.

“Overall joy and happiness we’re selected for this honor for our country,” band member Curtis Chancy said.

Chancy served in the military for 10 years and his grandfather and uncle were at Normandy during the war.

His uncle died there.

“It means I can step in their steps and pay homage to my family that stormed the beaches that day,” Chancy said.

UNCC was founded in 1946 to educate veterans returning home from WWII, and many of those veterans' relatives are there now.

Band member Victoria Bracken had three family members who served in WWII.

“I get to go perform to honor others (who) sacrificed themselves to make sure I have the freedom and the rights I have today,” Bracken said. “It’s going to be the most amazing experience."

The band will play at graveside ceremonies and parades throughout the first town liberated in France to remember those who died or were injured in that massive invasion.

The university plans to livestream their performance and the band members' experiences at 3 p.m. June 6.

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