NATIONAL BAND HONOR - Nick Arnaud, seated center, was named a 2017 U.S. Army All-American Marching Band member during Tuesday afternoon ceremonies held at Rayne High School. Among those in attendance were, seated from left, RHS Band Director Adrian Alba, Arnaud, NIcci Arnaud, mother; standing, Sgt. Steve Mercier, Staff Sgt. Blake Sistrunk, Lt. Sgt. Lawrence House and Staff Sgt. Rod Rodriguez. (Acadian-Tribune Photo by Lisa Soileaux)
Rayne High’s Nick Arnaud is named to U.S. Army All-American Marching Band
The U.S. Army All-American Bowl presented by American Family Insurance Selection Tour visited Rayne High School on Tuesday (Oct. 25) to announce that band member Nick Arnaud had been selected to the 2017 U.S. Army All-American Marching Band.
Arnaud is the son of Ricci Arnaud, a long-time educator in the Acadia Parish School Board system, and the grandson of Jo-Ann Arnaud and the late Richard Arnaud of Crowley.
The special program was held in the RHS band room, witnessed by Arnaud’s fellow band members, classmates, friends and family.
The U.S. Army All-American Marching Band performs each year at halftime of the nationally-broadcasted U.S. Army All-American Bowl, set this season for Saturday, Jan. 7, 2017, at noon at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
Arnaud was one of 125 band members selected for the honor among the thousands of applicants from across the United States to represent their school at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl game in January.
By becoming a U.S. Army All-American, Arnaud joins an elite group. Only 125 high school marching band members among the millions in the United States are selected each year.
Band members are chosen not only because they excel musically, but because they are mentally and physically agile, they know the importance of teamwork, and they are able to adapt to challenging situations, similar to U.S. Army Soldiers.
The process began last year during Arnaud’s junior session when he was nominated. The year-long wait culminated Tuesday when he was officially presented his jacket and invitation.
Arnaud also was selected as a member of the Lafayette Concert Band, and for the past two summers and was a member of the Louisiana Stars Drum and Bugle Corps of the Drum Corps International.
He also was selected as a participant of the First Baptist Church of Lafayette Orchestra, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Orchestra, LMEA All-State Symphonic Band and served as field captain of the Rayne High School Band among many honors on the local, parish and state levels.
A sousaphone player for the Rayne High School Band, Arnaud received an honorary jacket during the program.
In addition, his mother, Ricci Arnaud, received a special crystal “Dream Champion” award, while his band director, Adrian Alba, was presented a “student leader” award for his assistance and leadership to Arnaud during his band career.
Soldiers presenting Arnaud with his special band jacket were Lt. Col. Lawrence House, Staff Sgt. Blake Sistrunk, Sgt. Steven Mercier and Staff Sgt. Rod Rodriguez.
Emcee for the afternoon program was Garret Becker, noting only two Louisiana students were selected for this year’s honor.
For 17 years, the U.S. Army All-American Bowl has been the nation’s premier high school football game, serving as the preeminent launching pad for America’s future college and NFL stars.
For information on the U.S. Army All-American Marching Band, visit usarmyallamericanbowl.com.