Did you know a tuba costs around $7,500?
Unless you’ve been in a marching band before, that fact may have eluded you. But after the loss of Tuba #6, an instrumental member of the University of Texas at San Antonio’s Spirit of San Antonio marching band, the glaring cost of a new tuba (specifically, a sousaphone) matters more than ever.
Tuba #6 (yes, the instrument) perished when UTSA wide receiver Marquez McNair ran into the band on the sidelines to avoid being tackled during the Nov. 11 football game against the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
For what it’s worth, the pass was complete, and McNair, who literally landed on top of the tuba and crushed it, jumped up seemingly unfazed. Later in the evening, McNair retweeted a video of the incident, saying “Haha pray for the tuba”.
In the video, Tuba #6’s player, identified as Christopher Zuniga by mySA.com
, can be seen picking up the pieces, trying to process what just happened. Eventually, he lifts the tuba horn up in the air, pumping his fist as if to say, “It’s all good!”
But for Tuba #6, it was not all good. It may be gone, but it’s not forgotten. The band paid tribute to the instrument with an open casket memorial, in which several band members acted as pall bearers. UTSA fans paid tribute to the instrument with “RIP 6” banners during the last home game at the Alamodome this season.
Though it may hurt to think about so soon after the tragic accident, Tuba #6 will have to be replaced. A fundraising page
is taking donations for a new sousaphone. So far they have raised $535 of the $7,500 they need for the new instrument.