Super fan Gail McEnroe never misses an event with the Keller High School Indian Marching Band.
For the past few years, McEnroe has attended most every practice, every performance and many fundraisers, assisted with registration and baked cookies to support the band. She served as a bus chaperone on a recent away game trip when a bus broke down and didn’t miss a day at August band camp.
“I enjoy watching them from when they are freshmen and hardly know which foot is which to when they come together as this amazing group,” McEnroe said.
She doesn’t have a child or grandkid in the band but got involved several years ago after befriending Keller senior Jacob Moenickheim and his family. When she found out that Jacob had made the marching band as a freshman and played trumpet, she knew she wanted to help out.
McEnroe has always loved marching bands and drum and bugle corps. In her younger years, she and her cousin traveled around Pennsylvania to hear groups perform.
Jacob’s mom Debbie Moenickheim said they met McEnroe right after moving to Keller almost six years ago. McEnroe was staying with her grandchildren who live in the same neighborhood.
Debbie Moenickheim said, “My mother passed away several years ago, and Gail has always been there for me.”
McEnroe said, “They’re my family but just not by blood.”
Jacob said band members like all the support they get from McEnroe. “It’s just been great to have this breath of fresh air in the stands when we practice,” he said.
While directors are barking orders and students get stressed trying to hit their marks, “she’s up there for the sole purpose of she likes us,” Jacob said.
Head director Mark McGahey said he has never seen such a dedicated supporter in his 17-plus years in Keller. He and his staff try to include her as much as possible, often telling her what to look for at practice.
“It’s been really neat and special to see,” McGahey said. “Everyone loves seeing her up there.”
When not at band events, McEnroe can be found attending events for her grandchildren (one involved in theater at Keller High and another in gymnastics) and for Jacob’s sisters who are in choir, swimming and soccer.
“I just like hanging with the kids,” she said.
While the Indian Band recently honored McEnroe at their annual March-a-thon, she is quick to deflect attention back to the young musicians.
“I would rather it be about the band than me. They are so hard working and dedicated,” she said. “I just sit up there and watch.”