ROSELLE, NJ - The Abraham Clark High School “Leading Tones," alongside singer and star of "Pretty Little Liars," Lucy Hale, performed in a health initiative concert as the Voices of Meningitis on Tuesday. The “Leading Tones” were the winners of the Boost the Volume A Cappella Competition for the New York metro area and were selected as the Voices of Meningitis.
To help “Boost the Volume” for the importance of prevention against meningococcal meningitis, Hale challenged her teen fans at high school a cappella groups in the New York metro area (and three other cities across the country) to perform an inspirational medley of songs that speaks to living your best life. As the winning high school, the Abraham Clark “Leading Tones” got the opportunity to perform their medley with Lucy at a local concert for their peers and families.
Meningococcal meningitis, although rare, can be deadly and has the potential to kill an otherwise healthy teen in less than 24 hours. Millions of teens are under-vaccinated for this vaccine-preventable disease. According to data published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 77.8% of teens 13-17 years of age received the first dose of the vaccine, but only 29.6% received the recommended booster (or second) dose.
Meningitis survivor Jamie Schanbaum told her story of survival. She contracted meningococcal meningitis as a freshman in college. She began feeling ill one night and by the next morning, could not even walk. Little did she know that would be the last time she could ever walk on her own two legs. She spent seven months in the hospital, had both legs amputated as well as all of her fingers. Today, she spends her time competing, and winning, in the Special Olympics for bike riding. She has also passed a bill in her home state of Texas making the vaccine required for college students.
TAPinto Roselle had the opportunity to sit down and do an exclusive interview.
The “Leading Tones” opened the show by performing a number alongside Lucy, followed by a medley of songs. One of the songs performed was “Happy” by Pharrell Williams. Their songs featured all a cappella singing and instrumentals and even spoken messages about the importance of getting vaccinated for meningococcal meningitis.
The “Leading Tones” are comprised of the following students. Oreoluwa Awoleye, Taina Delatour, Karina Echeverria, Valerie Luxama, Tatianna Wimbush, Mecca Ali, Shayla Alleyne, Berlyh Cantave, Leah Snow, Ife Awoleye, Duane Patterson, Kyle Gordon, Robert Stephens and Elkin Vides.
For more information about meningococcal meningitis, talk to your doctor or your school nurse. You can also visit www.boostthevolume.com and check out the hashtag #boostthebooster.