Col. Truman Crawford
Drum Corps International Hall of Fame member Truman Crawford, Colonel and Commanding Officer and director of the United States Marine Drum and Bugle Corps, passed away Monday. Crawford died of complications from pneumonia while a patient at the Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, Pa. He was 68. Crawford, of Orrtanna Pa., began his affiliation with drum corps at age 8 when he joined a fife and drum corps in Endicott, N.Y. Later, he marched with and directed the U.S. Air Force Drum and Bugle Corps. He led the Marine drum and bugle corps from the late 1960s until 1998, when he retired as the oldest Marine on active duty. "His loss is just a real terrible thing for the drum corps world," said Joel Leson, a retired U.S. Army Colonel who was organizing a reunion banquet for Crawford. The banquet will still be held, on March 22, at the Hershey Lodge in Hershey, Pa., according to Leson. Leson is the current director of the Yankee Rebels senior corps, whom Crawford was the drum major for in 1969, 1970 and 1971. In 1965, every major drum and bugle corps title holder in the United States was either instructed by or performed music arranged by Crawford. He was also closely affiliated with the Cicero Royal Airs. A memorable Crawford/DCI event occurred when he conducted the combined corps' playing of "America/O' Canada" during DCI World Championships in 2000. "While this loss was anticipated, it will take many months to come to grips without Truman's smiling face at drum corps activities. Truman will be in my prayers, and I hope everyone will light a candle on his behalf," said Dr. David Kampschorer, Drum Corps International Hall of Fame Coordinator. Crawford will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C. A tribute will be posted on Tuesday.