MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - A check for $10,000 has brought music to a lot of ears at Montgomery’s Carver High School, and it came from a man who wants to see his alma mater’s band thrive.
“We were elated," said Carver Band Director LaFrancis Davis. "The students were elated.”
The man at the center of the big check presentation is Brian “Blue” Smith, a 2003 Carver graduate whom Davis said is the Voice of Carver High School. He’s responsible for announcements during halftime events at school games, but also so much more.
The donation started, according to Davis, after Smith received a civic award in 2018 from The Honda Foundation, which holds the Honda Battle of the Bands event in Atlanta. As a result, the foundation said they’d make a donation to an organization of Smith’s choice.
After talking with the band director about his decision, Davis was excited and he believed the program would get a much-needed $5,000. It turned out to be double that amount!
“For him, as well as myself, it’s a matter of just giving back to the community, giving back to the students and trying to make a difference in the students’ lives as someone has made in our lives,” Davis explained.
Smith played the tuba when he was in the band, but he’s made a lasting mark on those who came after him.
“What people dont understand is that band programs like these saves kids from the streets, violence, and gangs,” Smith wrote on his Blue Heart Foundation Facebook page. “Most importantly, music programs build character and teach kids how to read music and play.”
“The mentorship that he provides for our students probably outweighs the money,” Davis added, “because he comes in. He helps. He’s a role model, not just for the students but for the parents and the people in the community. But,” he added, “the $10,000 matters and it will help us out tremendously.”
Part of the money will go toward new equipment and uniforms. Another portion will be set aside to help with an “end-of-year incentive trip” that is planned for March. Davis and the band will travel to Orlando to perform in a parade at Universal Studios, something he’s never been able to do in his six years at Carver.
Watch Smith’s announcement below