Independence Day Parade – St. Kitts – Nevis -2009
Photo By Willett’s Photo Studio
Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
September 24, 2009 (SKNIS)
The young star of the Independence Day Parade – seventeen year old Private Gizelle Williams, has challenged her peers to remain focused on the positives in life and become involved in youth-related institutions or organizations.
“It’s good to have an extracurricular activity to get your mind active,” she said, noting the various opportunities she has had since joining the ranks of the St. Kitts-Nevis Defence Force Band in 2006. “I think young persons should join groups that will teach them obedience and respect and it’ll help them a lot.”
The young lady’s appeal was made on this week’s edition of SKNIS Perspectives, which gave listeners behind the scenes insight into the final practice session of the St. Kitts-Nevis Defence Force Band, as it prepared for the 26th Independence Day Parade at Warner Park.
Private Williams was quite nervous as it marked the first time a female was to lead the parade as drum major.
“A lot of pressure for a 17-year-old isn’t it?” posed the host. “Yes it is,” Ms. Williams replied, giving a heavy sigh. When asked if she would have opted not to be the drum major, Private Williams quickly responded, “No. I like it. I like it a lot.”
Her performance at the September 19, parade earned praise from spectators, the media, colleagues and the Prime Minister Honourable Dr. Denzil L. Douglas.
Band leader Nigel Williams said, “I was playing in the band and at times I was able to look at her and I was amazed. I was really, really impressed and I think she did a wonderful job.”
Ms. Williams noted that she felt a sense of accomplishment from her performance and credited the group dynamics of team work and self esteem as factors that contributed to her success.
Meanwhile, Sergeant Michael Christian reflected on his 22 years in the group, and explained that quite a number of young people have entered the band recently. “That to me is something very important especially at this time when we have antisocial behaviour coming from [some] youth. Coming into the band or any other part of the military or paramilitary is very good for them because it instills discipline, keeps them off the road and helps to keep them on the straight and narrow,” he stressed.