Troy High School band director marches in Rose Bowl parade


For the Miami Valley Today

TROY — Kathy McIntosh has dedicated much of her life to teaching Troy City Schools students how to play musical instruments while marching in performances.

On New Year’s Day, however, McIntosh, the music director for the school district, had the opportunity to march in one of the most prestigious parades in the country, as she played her mellophone while participating in the 133rd annual Tournament or Roses Parade in California.

McIntosh was one of 300 band directors from across the country selected to march in the parade alongside the Saluting America’s Band Directors float. For McIntosh, it was the opportunity of a lifetime. Finishing the entire parade route was also a personal triumph for McIntosh.

“It was awesome!” McIntosh said. “I was able to reconnect with some people that I knew and meet quite a few new folks. The 5.5 miles is especially grueling while playing an instrument, but the crowd was very supportive and cheered us all of the way.

“And I made it to the very end! This was a big goal for me because I have had some medical issues and about four months earlier I couldn’t go from my chair to the kitchen without taking a 2-3 hour nap. The band itself was full of great players, so we made great music. I was on the outside of the line, so I was in quite a few videos and pics from the parade which was awesome for people watching for me.”

While McIntosh didn’t get to attend the actual Rose Bowl football game and watch Ohio State defeat Utah 48-45 in a down-to-the-wise thriller, she did get a chance to meet up with former students Jamey Boezi and Tony Simon, both of whom are members of the Ohio State University marching band.

“While I’m not a big football fan, it was nice to see OSU fans along the parade route and shout ‘O-H’ to them,” McIntosh said. “I would have liked to get a ticket because we have two band students in the OSU band, but the tickets were still quite high in cost and honestly, I was tired after the parade and went back to my hotel room to crash for a couple of hours. I was able to find the OSU band students right after the parade and got a pic with them which was awesome for me!”

Many people watching the parade back in Troy were able to find McIntosh on TV during the broadcast of the parade. She said the support she’s received from the Troy community.

“People were so nice to me, encouraging me as I told them my plan, although some of them said I was crazy,” McIntosh said. “So many people followed me and my trip and supported me after I finished the parade. It was a great opportunity! I also shared my goal with my students. I told them that I hoped that they learned that no matter what adversity happens to you in life, you just have to set new goals and work to achieve them.”

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