The Jesse White Tumblers, that acrobatic troop always seen at half-time shows and parades, lost a bit of their punch this weekend when they discovered someone apparently trashed their drums.
About 20 of the tumbling corps' drums went missing Monday morning before the group was set to march in the Wellington-Oakdale Old Glory Marching Society parade in the Lakeview neighborhood.
While theft was at first suspected, the Secretary of State says the missing drum equipment was not stolen, but instead thrown out by a cleaning crew hired by the manager of a storage facility where the drums were being stored. The cleaning crew was called to deal with a flooded basement.
Most of the equipment was only about a year old. White says it was worth about $3,500 and that it was not insured.
The equipment was apparently tossed out sometime last year, but yesterday was the first time the team needed to use its gear.
White, who founded the troupe in 1959 as a way to engage residents of Chicago's Cabrini Green and Henry Horner housing developments, says the team will hold fundraisers and seek donations to replace the drum gear.