Interesting Request

So I’ve got an interesting request for all of you, especially any of you who live in Iowa. The Colts Drum and Bugle Corps have applied to be Iowa’s representative in President-Elect Obama’s Inagural Parade. I realize that when many of you marched, the Colts were more of a rival to the Knights that when I marched. However, I feel that anything that we can do as a part of the larger drum corps community to help promote the activity is a good thing.

All that I’m asking is that if you live in Iowa, it would be greatly appreciated if you went to this website: where you can find letters that you can modify (probably remove the section about being a Colts alumni) and email or fax to your US Congresspeople and US Senators Harkin and Grassley.
If you don’t live in Iowa (like me), you’re welcome to contact them as well, however, in some cases, they won’t take email from outside of their districts. Since I live close to Iowa, I’ve also contacted my local US Representative (Phil Hare, IL-17) and asked him to encourage his colleagues across the river in supporting the Colts.

Also, if you’re interested, you can follow the progress at the Colts @ Inaguration Parade page on Facebook.

Thank you all for your help.

Frances Skiles (Mother of Mike and Cindy) – 1927-2008

Just received an email saying that Frances Skiles, mother of Mike and Cindy, passed away Sunday, October 12th.
Click the link to view the Frances Skiles Obituary from the QCOnline website.
More information can be found at Vandemore Funeral Home website

Website Updates

Just wanted to let everyone know, I’ve been working a bit on the multimedia pages. Not much new, but all the links should work now. Photos, sounds all work like they used to, videos still work fine.

Also, I’ve been able to import the old email list from the old website, so all the information is there again (without having to click through to the old version of the site). Don’t worry, this isn’t the final version (I know that parts of the email addresses are cut off), I’m still working on ways to show this information that works well in this new format, as well as setting up a database that the information is pulled from, allowing sorting/searching by year, instrument, name, etc. Stay tuned for more updates.

New Alumni Forum

So, I’ve decided to change the forum to something that will hopefully be more easy for everyone to use. You’re still welcome to leave comments after specific posts, but if you want to have discussions/conversations, I encourage you to give the new forum a try. You can get there via the Forum link at the top of the page, or by clicking here:

Martin Ferm (father of Barry and Jay) – 1928-2008

Just received an email from Jon Anderson saying that Martin Ferm, father of Barry and Jay Ferm, passed away yesterday, September 10th.

More information is available at the Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home Website.

Quick update…

Added a new video page. For now, I’m just posting videos that are found on YouTube or other online video sharing sites, to save bandwidth and storage. I’m going to play around with some things and maybe we’ll have more video eventually. There’s a clip from the opener from 1984 on there right now, stop by and check it out.

Switching to the new website…

In case you couldn’t tell, I’ve finally converted the Knights website over to the new format. There’s still some work left to do on a few pages, but for those pages, I’ve included links to the old version of the pages, so you can go back and still retrieve the same info. Once I’ve got everything converted over, I’ll get rid of the old site completely (well, not completely, I always keep local backups on my computer of my websites).

Anyway, it’s kinda like building a new house. I’ve got the kitchen, bathroom, dining room and bedroom built, so we can move in…but I’m still getting the den, living room, and garage built. Apologies for the sawdust.

There’s a lot we can do with the new site that I couldn’t do with the old site (like better post management and searching, and an rss feed for people who like to do that sort of thing). It also makes it much easier for someone else to take over the site if, for any reason, I am unable to continue managing the website. If you have any suggestions, feel free to let me know at

So, if you didn’t get a look at the site when it was in beta…take a look around, kick the tires a bit, breathe in that new website smell. I hope you like it.

Oh, and for everyone who uses the guestbook, there’s a few things to keep in mind.
1. You can now comment on any of the posts, so feel free to comment, have discussions, etc. whenever it relates to anything that I post to the site.
2. I’m hoping to get all of the shout-outs, personal updates, calls for info, etc. to be moved over to the Knights group over at Google Groups (it’s a lot easier to manage, find, and sort through posts). You can go check it out at
3. If you’d like to, you can go back and View the Old Guestbook or Sign the Old Guestbook.
I don’t know for sure what the best way to do this type of forum/discussion arena, but I know that the old Guestbook style makes it very hard for me to work with. Going with something like Google Groups would allow you to find all the posts from a specific person, or about a specific topic, etc.
Anyway, your input is welcomed. Thanks in advance for your support.

Not directly related but…

So this isn’t directly related to the Knights, but I think it’s close enough for enough people to post it here.

I’m helping organize the WIU Alumni Marching Band for Homecoming, October 18th, 2008. I know that quite a few Knights also went to Western and were in the Marching Band. Here’s the deal: last year, Mr. Phillips (the current band director) said that if we were able to get 50 or more alumni in the alumni band (a reasonable goal, we had probably half that last year with much less organization), we could probably play an alumni band-only song (previously, we’d play with the current marching band).

I’ve started a Facebook group and event ( to start getting people organized, but I know that some people aren’t on Facebook, so I’m trying to get the word out to any WIU band alumni that are out there. If you marched with the WIU Marching Leathernecks and would like to dust off the old horn or drum and entertain a football stadium full of people again, either go to the group, or email me at Thanks.


Some suggestions have been brought to my attention regarding the future of the website (thank you to Steve Scherer and Adam Sporluck).

As much as we hate to admit it, we’re all getting older; an idea that was made much more tangible with the recent passing of another beloved member of our Knights family. One of the purposes of this website is to allow people to remember the past through contact with friends from years gone by, remembering the sights and sounds from those years, and making everyone feel like they’re 18 again. Because of this purpose, we will be starting a new project, partially involving the website, but more than just the website.


Stories of the days when you marched, when you picked up your horn, strapped on your drum, taped up your flag or rifle. Stories of when you rode the bus all night across the midwest and slept on gym floors, just to get up the next morning, practice for hours, and perform for 100, 1000, 10,000 people in stadiums across the country. And you loved every minute of it. We all have stories from when we marched, good and bad, some were told to friends and family, some are simply remembered in our own minds.

What we would like to do is to gather together these stories; as many as possible; and store them for the future. Some of these stories will be displayed on the website, but if you have stories that you want to be remembered, but maybe not necessarily posted on the site for the whole world to see, we can store those too. We can keep them for the future, password protect them, or however you would like them kept.

How many stories have already been lost with the passing of so many of our Knights family? Bringing these stories together into one place will help to ensure that people will know and remember who the Knights were.

Being one of the last members of the Knights has it’s upside and it’s downside. The downside was that when I marched, the glory years of the corps were long gone, and we were just a small division III corps, barely getting by. The upside is that it makes me one of the youngest of the Knights, which means that I (hopefully) have a long time that I can keep this website going. I promise that, as long as I am able, I will continue to keep this site up and running, and the images, sounds, and stories available, so that your children, grandchildren, and future generations can know at least a small part of what we all experienced.

So, your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to start writing down stories that you feel should be remembered from when you were a marching member of the Knights. Include as much as you feel comfortable sharing, as well as the year it happened (if you remember), any other people involved, or anything else I can use to help categorize your stories. Send them to me at and I will start saving them. At some point, hopefully soon, I will put together a page for these stories, which will allow people to view them by year, search by people’s names, and other categories yet-to-be-determined.

Ideally, this will be the first step in creating something much greater than what we currently have. A good friend of mine, Adam Sporluck (Baritone/Euph ’93-’94), has quite a few great ideas, in addition to what I’ve got on tap, and between the both of us, I think we have the tech knowledge to be able to do it. If you have any questions or suggestions for this project, please email me at and we’ll see what we can do.

Arrangements for Tony Chamberlain

Arrangements have been made for Tony Chamberlain. They are as follows:

Visitation – Friday, May 30, 6-8 p.m. at
DeBolt-Kidd Funeral Home
120 South Miller Street
Toulon, IL, 61483

Funeral – Saturday, May 31, 10:30 a.m. at
DeBolt-Kidd Funeral Home
120 South Miller Street
Toulon, IL, 61483

Interment to follow at
Evergreen Memory Gardens
2472 U.S. Highway 34
Kewanee, IL 61443

The Tony Chamberlain Memorial Fund has been established c/o State Bank of Toulon, 102 West Main Street, Toulon, IL, 61483. Funds will offset the cost of medical bills, and anything additional will be contributed to charity.