October 31, 1999

Alameda County Sheriff’s Department Band Folds

The Alameda County Sheriff’s Department Pipe Band of California has been disbanded due to a loss of players after the band took second at the Grade 2 event at the 1999 World Pipe Band Championships on August 14.

“Without a local base you can’t play jobs to raise money,” said Drum Sergeant Tim Gladden. “Everything becomes more of a hassle, increased stress on the P/M who has had health problems for years, basic band operations become much more expensive, etc. We decided to end it on a high.”

The organization will continue its “junior band,” with all money and uniforms from the Grade 2 band going to it.

The senior band was formed in 1997 with six pipers and eight drummers. The husband and wife team of Helen and Tim Gladden led the band as pipe major and drum sergeant, respectively.

City of Washington, from Washington, DC, was the only band to beat Alameda in Grade 2 at the World’s.

Said one pipe band enthusiast: “With City of Washington moving to Grade 1 and Alameda disbanding, the Scottish Grade 2 bands will be breathing a collective sigh of relief.”


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