Marching 100 member receives scholarship honoring FAMU student killed in Iraq
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Music, marching and memorial all came together Monday evening as a member of the Marching 100 received an inaugural scholarship in honor of a Florida A&M University student who died fighting in Iraq.
Sgt. Edmond Randle enlisted in the U.S. Army so his mother wouldn’t be burdened with his college tuition.
Marching 100 trumpet player Toron Jones said receiving the scholarship is life-changing for him.
“I’m feeling overly happy,” Jones said.
The fall semester scholarship means his overnight shift at Walmart won’t get in the way of things he loves this summer, like helping younger musicians during FAMU’s band camp.
“Sometimes I can’t participate because I’m working,” Jones said.
The Miami native has a lot in common with a man he’ll never meet, but which he owes a debt of gratitude to.
“I felt the need to try to commemorate his birthday and also honor his legacy,” Chevalier Rollins, Randle’s brother and the founder of the scholarship, said.
Randle was 26 years old when he died — he would’ve been 45 on Monday.
“In 2000, he signed up for service because he didn’t want our mom to pay for college,” Rollins said.
But instead, Randle’s memory lives on in through the musicians he’ll help.
The scholarship was provided by the Soulever Foundation, which was created three years ago in Randle’s memory.
The next scholarship will be given to another Marching 100 member in the fall.
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