Sunday, July 27, 2014

Former OSU Marching Band Member Mentioned in Report Speaks Out

BAND SCANDAL: Former OSU Marching Band Member Mentioned in Report Speaks Out - WSYX - Columbus, Ohio Top Stories - Breaking News, Weather, and Traffic

DOWNTOWN COLUMBUS (James Jackson) -- We're hearing from a former member of The Ohio State University's marching band. Former band director, Jon Waters, was terminated earlier this week, after a report saying he allowed a culture of sexual harassment.

ABC 6/FOX 28 talked to a woman, who is identified with a sexually explicit nickname in the university's 23 page report. She did not want to be identified. "The people who gave me this name were the same people who taught me and coached me for a whole summer, who gave me pep talks when I thought I just wasn’t going to cut it, who became and still are my best friends and a family to me," the woman said.

She goes on to say the name was not shameful or sexist, but a preferred name. Now, she says she feels objectified and sexualized from the way the university and media handled the situation. "And despite being mentioned several times in this report, not once was an attempt made by any on the investigating team to contact me and find out if anything that was being written about me was accurate," the woman said.

The woman adds, Waters never referred to her as her nickname, only her first name.

OSU's marching band and the Columbus Symphony Orchestra performed at Picnic with the Pops, Saturday night, in the Columbus Commons. As the crowd gathered, a plane flew a banner over the event, saying, "We Stand With Jon." Kyle Hudson started a campaign on the website,, taking donations for the banner. He says they met their financial goal in two hours.

As the pilot flew the banner over the event, the crowd clapped. ABC 6/FOX 28 talked to band members parents in the crowd. Scott Mills says this year will mark his son's third year in the band. "I thought it was great. Wed saw everybody pointing and we looked up there and it was like. Jon's a great guy and the kids are devastated," Mills said.

Mills says Waters was a good band director and made the group better. "With Jon, the last two years have been so different. That it is getting better. That sure, you know. They're college kids for God sakes," Mills said.

Also at Picnic with the Pops, Waters' supporters passed around signs saying, "We Stand With Jon," while the bands played.

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