UConn band honored Parkland school shooting victim at halftime against UCF

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Alex Schachter, who was killed in the February shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was honored by the UConn marching band, which spelled out his name during its halftime show in its season opener against Central Florida on Thursday night. (AP Photo/Pat Eaton Robb)
Alex Schachter, who was killed in the February shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was honored by the UConn marching band, which spelled out his name during its halftime show in its season opener against Central Florida on Thursday night. (AP Photo/Pat Eaton Robb)

Alex Schachter planned to apply to UConn, join the marching band and play the trombone. He wore a gray UConn sweatshirt nearly every day to school, too. It was his dream.

He, though, never got that chance.

Alex was one of 17 people who was killed in the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, in February. He was 14.

So at halftime of UConn’s season opener against No. 21 Central Florida on Thursday night, the Huskies marching band paid tribute. The band spelled out his name across the field while playing his favorite song, Chicago’s “25 or 6 to 4,” garnering a massive standing ovation. They even left a trombone spot open on the field in his honor.


The university didn’t stop there, though. Shortly after his death, UConn sent his family a posthumous letter granting Alex admission to the school. His family also set up a band scholarship there in his name.

”After February 14th I was in the worst place,” Alex’s dad, Max Schachter said on Thursday. ”I hated life. I hated the world. I wanted to die.

“And a week later, to get the letter from UConn saying they were going to admit Alex to the school that he always wanted to go to, the school that his mother went to, the school that his brother went to, the school that he came to in the summers and dreamed about being in the band and meeting his idol, Ray Allen. It was incredible.”

His family all traveled to East Hartford, Connecticut, on Thursday night for Huskies’ 56-17 loss to UCF. Max, for the first time since February, got to wear his son’s favorite sweatshirt, too.

”I haven’t worn it since he passed away,” he said. ”I wanted to wear it today.”

Max Schachter, second from left, the father of Alex Schachter, who was killed in the February shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, watches the UConn marching band play during the halftime show dedicated to his son at the Huskies’ season opener against Central Florida on Thursday. From left are Tim Goldberg, Alex’s cousin; Schachter; Patti Goldberg, aunt; and Paul Goldberg, uncle. (AP Photo/Stephen Dunn)
Max Schachter, second from left, the father of Alex Schachter, who was killed in the February shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, watches the UConn marching band play during the halftime show dedicated to his son at the Huskies’ season opener against Central Florida on Thursday. From left are Tim Goldberg, Alex’s cousin; Schachter; Patti Goldberg, aunt; and Paul Goldberg, uncle. (AP Photo/Stephen Dunn)

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