U.S. Marine band delights at CPDC concert

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A U.S. Marine Corps band lit up America’s Independence Day weekend with a free concert for the orphans and underprivileged children at the Child Protection & Development Center.

The Japan-based 3rd Marines Expeditionary Force Band pounded out pop tunes from Bon Jovi to Michael Jackson July 3 and threw in a selection of oldies for the adults supervising excited youngsters from the CPDC, Baan Jing Jai, Mercy Center, Pattaya Orphanage, School for the Deaf and Redemptorist School for the Blind.

Youngsters enjoy a good meal before the show. Youngsters enjoy a good meal before the show.

Rev. Michael Weera Pangrak, director of the Pattaya Orphanage, got the entertainment going after a sumptuous buffet with the clang of a gong. The seven-member band, fronted by female lead singer Staff Sgt. Alex J. Bush, really put their backs into it.

Many children and even some adults couldn’t resist jumping up to dance and soon everyone attending was in a cheerful mood, forgetting about the contentious national elections held that day or threatening rain clouds.

The U.S. Marine Corp band has everyone on their feet and dancing. The U.S. Marine Corp band has everyone on their feet and dancing.

Band leader Chief Warrant Officer 3rd Class Stephen B. Giove said the band came from its base in Okinawa to help celebrate the United States July 4 birthday. He was accompanied by U.S. embassy staffers Courtney J. Woods, Sgt. Paul E. Marvin, and Kanchalee Jitjang, who arranged the Pattaya tour.

The rain held off until the music ended and sponsors handed out gifts to band members and organizers, who in turn presented their own present to Radchada Chomjinda, director of the CPDC’s parent, the Human Help Network Thailand.