100-year-old Ohio State Marching Band alumnus dotting the “i”

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COLUMBUS — A special alumnus will be dotting the “i” during Ohio State’s halftime show Saturday.

100-year-old Anthony Violi graduated from Ohio State in 1942 and played trumpet for the Ohio State Marching Band while pursuing his bachelor’s degree in music, according to the university.

Ohio State said Violi joined the band just one year after they performed Script Ohio for the first time and has marched in almost every Marching Band Reunion Game performance since 1996.  The reunion performances reportedly feature 700 current and former band members who take the field for pre-game and halftime shows.

At Saturday’s game against Tulane, Violi will be dotting the “i” in Script Ohio in recognition of his 100th birthday, which was May 4, and his longtime dedication to the Ohio State Marching Band, the university said.

Usually the “i” is dotted by a sousaphone player, but the marching band alumni association says “exceptions are made for exceptional individuals” and this exception has only been extended to less than 20 individuals, including Woody Hayes, Bob Hope, Jack Nicklaus and former band director Jon Woods.

Violi has reportedly been practicing for the his honorary moment  at his home in Steubenville.  He created a makeshift football field in his backyard to make sure he’s prepared to dot a very special i.

“I’ve been practicing. I’m going to go out on the field and bow down to the visitors’ side, and then I’ll do an about face and bow down to the home side,” Violi told Ohio State, “I’m practicing that turn and all of that to make sure it goes well.”

More on the Ohio State Marching Band here.

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