The Mighty Sound of the Southeast stays a part of its members’ lives for many years after they graduate. The brotherhood and sisterhood of being a part of something bigger than themselves never leaves a member’s heart. Julie Moody Mise exemplified this familial and eternal connection.
Julie was immersed in music from a young age. She and her older sister, Jan Reeves, grew up listening to music all the time. Their father, Gus Moody, often played jazz and was the band director at Summerville High School where Julie played clarinet.
“Music was always being played at our house. It was just a part of our life in every way,” said Jan. “Some people grow up with food memories that bring back memories of home, but I think we grew up with musical memories above all else, even though our mother was a fabulous cook.”
Jan received her Master of Music in clarinet performance in 1982. Julie joined USC the next year in 1983. She was recruited by Jim Copenhaver and Doug Graham since she was the first chair clarinet in the South Carolina Senior All State Band her senior year in high school.
Julie automatically joined The Carolina Band to continue her love of music. She eventually became the captain of the Carolina Colorguard and performed in Symphonic Bands.
Julie met her lifelong friend, Beth Bedenbaugh, at band camp in their sophomore year. That same year was the Black Magic year when Gamecock Football went 10-2 and were invited to play in the Gator Bowl. Julie and Beth were both in the Carolina Cologuard and bonded over their love of Gamecock football.
“Julie and I clicked right off the bat. We knew what was happening on the field which I can't say for many of the Carolina Colorguard members,” said Beth. “We would even sing at the top of our lungs the fight song (word for word) every time our Gamecocks scored!”
They became roommates in college and were co-captions of the Carolina Colorguard their senior year. They traveled together for all the away games and were even at Notre Dame when the Gamecocks won.
“One of our favorite things to do with the band was singing the Alma Mater acapella at the end of each practice and game,” said Beth. “It was always so beautiful with all the parts and band members coming together musically and as friends. It would always bring us to tears.”
Julie received a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education and a Master of Library and Information Science from Carolina.
"Even though she ended up not majoring in music, she was an active member of The Carolina Band and she had a great love for the music department,” said Jan.
I continually tell people that one of the best assets that USC has is its quality music school. I don't think the general public realizes what a gem it is.
– Jan Reeves
Post-graduation, Julie served many students in the classroom and various libraries as a National Board Certified media specialist and teacher in Dorchester School District II and Lexington V School District during her career. She made reading a pleasure for many students and was known to spontaneously break out into song.
Julie met her future husband, Bryan Mise, at Summerville Baptist Church in 2000 where they became friends and eventually started dating in 2002. It wasn’t too long before they were married on May 17, 2003. The Carolina Band meant so much to Julie throughout her entire life. She would often tell Bryan stories of home games and road trips with her friend Beth.
Being encouraged by Julie, Bryan decided to go back to school to finish his undergraduate degree at the Darla Moore School of Business and graduated in 2010. When they arrived on campus, they both knew that they had to start going to the home football games. In the Fall of 2009 they were able to buy their first season of home football tickets. They were even able to take their daughter Hayden (only 1 ½ at the time) to several games.
“Julie would make sure that we always stayed in our seats during halftime so she could watch The Carolina Band’s performance with pride,” said Bryan. Julie passed on her love for music and for USC to her daughter, Hayden. Hayden is currently a viola player and athlete in high school.
Julie passed away on February 23, 2022. Her loving husband reached out to USC and the School of Music this past Fall because he wanted a way to remember Julie’s vibrant legacy and her love for USC and The Carolina Band. The Julie Moody Mise Carolina Band Endowed Scholarship was created in her honor. Each year a student of The Carolina Band will be chosen.
“Music and being a Gamecock were such important parts and passions of Julie’s life. Even in her last days she was enjoying hearing The Mighty Sound of the Southeast perform during the Mayo Bowl. I couldn’t think of a more fitting way to remember her, providing a legacy of her time at USC and to support a fellow student who has the same passions. She bled Garnet and Black! ” said Bryan.
I know for me, without The Carolina Band, I would have never met Julie Moody Mise, and my life would have been less full without her kindness and grace. The world was a better place with her in it.
Director of The Carolina Band, Dr. Jay Jacobs, says member experience has always been the top priority for The Carolina Band and that the band owes so much to alumna like Julie.
“Her story exemplifies how the USC band experience shapes lives and provides cherished, life-long memories,” said Dr. Jacobs. “In turn, Julie’s time in the band and her support were an important part of the band’s success and identity. We are grateful for this wonderful gift, which will allow future students to experience The Carolina Band while honoring the memory of Julie Moody Mise.”
Julie’s family legacy and love for music lives on through the recipients of the scholarship.
"It is an honor to be a part of establishing this endowment in Julie's name that will benefit future music students. Even as she is now singing with the angels in heaven (she had a beautiful voice too) she can impact future musicians in South Carolina,” said Jan.
Her entire family could not be prouder of the contributions that Julie made to the School of Music. The scholarship is open to all South Carolina residents who play in the Carolina Band. The first recipient will be in Fall of 2023. Please make a gift to the scholarship fund here.
About The Carolina Band
Founded in 1920 as a student-led group of approximately 20 students, The Carolina Band has grown to number more than 350 students representing over 70 academic majors and 20 states. Students in The Carolina Band represent nearly every college and school on the USC Columbia campus, with numerous Honors College students and Capstone Scholars. Having marched for over a century, it continues to entertain fans, serve the university and community, and provide students with an outlet to represent the very best of what the University of South Carolina has to offer.