This is Rocklin - a Generous Band Parent Gives a Surprise Gift
to a Grateful Rocklin High School Student and it All Goes Viral!
Special thanks to RHS Music Boosters Board member and Parent Volunteer Laura Tolladay for this fantastic write up!
Luis Sanchez is a junior at Rocklin High School. He was first introduced to the trumpet at Rock Creek Elementary by Rocklin Unified School District Elementary Music Director Mike Hannickel (who has since retired). Mr. Hannickel played the the violin, clarinet, trombone and trumpet for all the 5th grade students, and the moment Luis heard the trumpet, he knew that was the instrument for him.
Luis told his Mom he wanted a trumpet, but she thought it would be a passing fancy, and the trumpet would end up under this bed collecting dust. But that wasn’t the case at all. Luis start playing with the school band in elementary school, then in middle school. And now in high school, Luis plays in the Marching, Symphonic and Jazz Bands at Rocklin High. With each school there was a different trumpet to play, a loaner from the school. But they were old, and worn out, and didn’t work very well.
The new trumpet, and his current loaner from the school
Luis wanted a new trumpet to play, one with valves that worked, and with a mouthpiece that wasn’t too small. He realized a new trumpet was a lot of money, but knew if he saved his pennies, he would eventually be able to buy one. And he started saving, literally every penny. He has the penny jar, and takes the pennies to the bank once it gets full. The last bank trip he had $97.68 worth of pennies. A few years ago he took a trip to Disneyland with the Middle School Band, and a friend of the family gave him money to spend at Disneyland. He spent $25 in Disneyland, and brought home $25 to add to his trumpet fund, that’s how dedicated he is to saving.
Luis and his trumpet fund penny jar
Since his Confirmation in 2011, he has been saving money for a trumpet. He’s helped move friends, gone door to door asking to clean people’s yards, all he asks is for donations to his trumpet fund. His friends and brothers have helped. He even taught trumpet lessons to an underclassman. He was on a mission!
Last year The Music Store in Rocklin donated a brand new Jupiter Trumpet to the Rocklin High Music Boosters fundraiser. Luis bid on the trumpet, but was out-bid by another family. He was disappointed, but kept up his ruthless savings. Last week at school he found out The Music Store had donated a trumpet again this year, and he was very excited!
The trumpet was the last item to be bid on that night. The Master of Ceremonies, Gian Montesini has a daughter who plays in the Jazz Band with Luis. Gian, and many of the other students and their parents, knew how long Luis has been saving. When the bidding for the new trumpet started, Luis was in the running, but was soon outbid. The bidding got past the $600 he’d saved. Amazingly, one parent gave him $100 so he could keep bidding. Another parent did the same, and a third parent gave him another $100 as well. Yet he was still out bid. The value placed on the trumpet was $1,200, and the bidding went up to $1,200, and that bid was from Gian, the MC. No one could go higher. So Gian bought the trumpet.
He paid for the trumpet (a donation for the Music Boosters donated by Rocklin’s Music Store). And Gian calmly walked over to Luis, put it down in front of him, and walked away. Luis couldn’t believe what just happened. He was in shock!
Luis says he will always treasure the trumpet Mr. Montesini gave to him. And his parents, Jose and Rosa are still in shock. Jose is a school bus driver for Roseville Unified School District, and Rosa is a cafeteria worker for Rocklin Unified School District. Luis is the third of four kids, he has two older sisters, and one younger brother who is also at Rocklin High. They moved to Rocklin from the Bay Area so Jose could spend more time with his kids. Family means everything to this close-knit family. And they are all overwhelmed by the generosity bestowed upon their family, and the way their story has touched so many strangers, who have commented so positively on facebook.
Luis has never had formal lessons. He credits Tom Douglass, current music director at Rocklin High School, with a lot of his success. “I was in Mr. Douglass’ class at Spring View Middle School, and was so happy when he came to Rocklin High last year. He’s a great teacher!” Luis also learns various trumpeting techniques from watching YouTube videos, and his parents say he easily picks things up by ear.
He gets inspiration from his favorite trumpet player, Arturo Sandovol. He prefers Big Band over more contemporary jazz, and also enjoys Louis Armstrong and Dizzy Gillespie.
When he’s not playing the trumpet he’s doing school work. But he also finds time to dance with the Ballet Folklorico Nube de Oro, which he’s been doing since he was 5. And this year he tried something new. He had a role in the Rocklin High Musical, Footloose. Luis has also been asked to play with a local Mariachi band, but he needs to put that off until the summer so he can concentrate on school.
After high school he wants to go to college, and take his trumpet with him.
Thanks Photography by Ryan D. Middleton
for the great pictures!
Check out Good Day live coverage: