“If some strong actions had been taken, then Robert Champion may be alive now,” said White.
The FAMU marching band, which has performed at presidential inaugurations and the Super Bowl, was set to be the first HBCU band to perform at Carnegie Hall. But in spite of their strong performances, the FAMU marching band has a history of mistakes off the field. In 2001, a former band member, Marcus Parker, experienced kidney damage for being paddled too much. There have also been other hazing incidents in the school’s past that have also threatened to tarnish their image.
“It’s a culture,” White said. “Not just a Florida A&M culture, a college phenomenon.”