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Wilbert Pettegrew: 1931

C. Wilbert (Wib) Pettegrew, (OSUMB 1931) was the first of four drum majors who were "graduates" of Camp Lazarus, the Central Ohio Boy Scout camp near Delaware. All four were tutored by Knepper: Pettegrew, Jim McCreary, Bill Casey and Wesley Leas.

"Knepper should be remembered as one of the best of all time. Among his four students, each was better than his immediate predecessor. McCreary introduced the spinning goal post toss, while Knepper and I did it end-to-end. Casey was smooth and exuberant. Wes Leas projected a lot of personality on the field — the best at this, I think, until Deve Kesling came along," Pettegrew said.

"My first entrance into the stadium, I hit my shako, knocking the plume clear off and pushing the hat down over my eyes. The crowd didn't really notice, I guess, but Knepper, sitting in the stands, nearly split with laughter. 'I told you you'd better wear that hat more in practice!' he said."

"It goes without saying that being a drum major was great training in leadership. In those days, we really directed the band on the field, setting the cadence and giving all the signals for every moment. The bigger batons we used for an over-the-hand roll, instead of the finger twirl used so effectively with the small batons, were really necessary for those signals, along with the whistle," said Pettegrew.