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It is with great sadness that I inform all current and former members of the Miami University Marching Band that Mike Cifuentes, a 5 year member (1998-2002) of the MUMB was killed on Tuesday, August 2, 2005, in a roadside attack in Iraq.  He had been a Marine for over 2 years, joining immediately after he left Miami University.

Mike was a member of the Tuba section and a member of Tau Beta Sigma. Mike always gave 100% to the band and to TBS.  He loved Miami Football and was always the team's loudest voice from the stands. With great enthusiasm, he was always the 1st in line for the Tuba snake and the one to ring the President's doorbell during the Band Day Parade.

I remember the day that he told me he had joined the Marines.  Asking him why, he responded that the Marines would give him purpose and a direction in life.

A testament to his character, courage and patriotism was the fact that he was willing to face the grave dangers that active military service in Iraq presented.  I know Mike was a very proud Marine and a true American.  We can only be thankful that Mike was with us for 24 short years.  He was our friend, our brother and our defender.

Although most of you do not remember Mike, please take a moment to give thanks to a young man who was willing to give the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

God Bless You Mike. We will all miss you.

David Shaffer
Miami University Marching Band


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