Parents of USNA Midshipmen BEAT ARMY !!
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  • Back to 2002-2003 Picture Page

    Navy-No Carolina football
    Story by Elaine Brye and photos by Barbara Craig

    March On of Brigade of Midshipmen
    The Game, Half Time and the Crowd

    A football game at Navy is more than just a score...that is the conclusion that Towanda and I came up with after yesterdays opener. Despite the frustrating loss-it was a beautiful day full of many positive experiences.

    The opening ceremonies unveiled a new addition to the Navy Stadium-that of the name Enduring Freedom added to the list of battles commerated on the stadium walls. The name was unveiled a a number of Fleet Commanders(I lost count). As my son said after he took their pictures with the Navy goat-"I just met a whole constellation!" blinded by all the stars. A flyby highlighted the opening ceremonies-made even more exciting by the banner towing airplane that was definitely in the wrong place at the wrong time. Apparently at one mile out our Navy pilots sighted the aricraft and decided to fly under it....it was really amazing.It was a beautiful sunny day and the Brigade looked great as they marched on the field. As they streamed into the stadium my husband commented on how the Plebes look so relaxed and had lost that "scared rabbit " look from earlier in the summer. And they got to do pushups..which was a good thing. It was just too bad they did not get to do more.

    We spent our time sitting on the hill at the end of the stadium. There are activities there for the younger children-and of course the classic find a piece of cardboard and slide down the hill activity. Around the refreshment area Mids milled around enjoying the opportunity to hang out.
    Of course it would have been better if Navy had won-but the level of respect from the NC State fans and team was apparent. Our football players have a bigger goal in mind-to fight in a bigger battle. The most touching moment was at the end of the game when it is traditional to sing Navy Blue and Gold. The players lined up on the field and all the Mids began to sing with hands on their hearts. Then I noticed that a number of the NC State players also had their hands on their hearts! As my son's sponsor dad, a 57 grad, said "It brought a tear to my eye."

    Afterwards it was a flurry of tailgaters to choose from-and then downtown Annapolis filled with white uniforms. Ben and Jerry's did a brisk business. I enjoyed watching plebes flanked by parents who had the opportunity to come for a visit. We managed to watch the last match of the Navy Volleyball team win their tournament for the first time in seven years-Yeah! Then as we were leaving the Yard the incoming stream of plebes made it apparent that liberty was almost over-a great day, despite the disappointment on the scoreboard.