The Evans High School marching band performs their halftime show leaving a space where Holly Spivey would have marched. Holly died Friday in a house fire.
Photo by Valerie RowellJay O'Brien, 16, had played the clarinet next to Holly Spivey since the sixth grade.
But last Friday night - as Evans High School celebrated homecoming - Jay had to go on the field at halftime without her as a member of the Evans High School marching band.
Holly was an active member of the band, earning state honors and two years of Winthrop honor band accolades, until she died with her parents in a fire at the Spiveys' Martinez home early Friday morning.
"I know for a fact she is in a better place," Jay said.
Jay and the rest of the band wore black armbands for the halftime performance at Friday night's homecoming game. It is the first time the band has performed the entire show and they wanted to dedicate it to Holly.
Band members cheered and challenged the other team's band, but when the music stopped, most laid their instruments in their lap and at stared somberly at the football action on the field.
Lighted candles left by mourners cover the front steps of the Spiveys' burned home at 133 West Lynne Drive in Evans. Holly and her parents, Harry and Linda Spivey, died Friday in the fire.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
"We love you and will always miss you," band director Richard Brasco said. over the loudspeaker in a small speech about Holly's death before the performance. "As long as this band exists, you and your music will live on."
Senior field commander Jennifer Holt, 17, was not nervous about playing the show all the way through or even doing it for Holly.
"It is more like just keeping everything together," she said.
Chelle Nelson, 17, a senior, was in Wind Ensemble I, the top band, with Holly. She described many students sobbing in that second-period class Friday.
Drew Nelson, senior percussion lieutenant, encouraged his section to play their hearts out for Holly just before halftime.
"Whether you knew Holly or not, march for her tonight. She was a member of this band," he told the percussion section.
Before nightfall Friday, friends had created another memorial to Spivey. Candles and flowers lined the steps to the Spiveys' burned home.
The band was asked to perform and act as honorary pallbearers in a memorial service for the family at 2 p.m. Tuesday at Abilene Baptist Church on Washington Road in Martinez.
Evans High School students signed a banner made to mark the memory of Holly Spivey.
Photo by Valerie Rowell
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