Grand Rapids Marching Band will be traveling to competitions in style thanks to a generous donation from Jim and Suzanne Ducharme, owners of MEDS 1 Ambulance Service, and their son Blake.

The Ducharmes recently donated a semi trailer to the band program to transport instruments and other equipment to events out of town.

“The trailer gives us the opportunity to compete on a national level and to house all of our equipment in one place,” said GRHS Band Director Dale Gunderson. “We now have a band room on wheels!”

Valued at over $60,000, the cost of the trailer was offset by the sale of the former band trailer and vehicle. “This is such a generous donation,” said ISD 318 Superintendent Matt Grose.

“I continue to be impressed by the support our community offers to schools,” added Grose.

The Ducharme’s son Blake participated in marching band for three years. Even though he graduated last year, the family continues to see the importance of marching band for GRHS students and the community. “We were always extremely impressed with the positive attitudes that kids had. We saw the marching band having the most positive influence on the kids. This was obviously due to the leadership of the marching band directors,” said Jim. “These kids work hard too and they enjoy it. We can’t wait to see this band take it to the next level.”

The GRHS Marching Band continues to practice, following physical distancing restrictions. You can find a list of upcoming events on their Facebook page at


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