Phantom Regiment is pleased to welcome our newest inductees to the Phantom Regiment Hall of Fame.
The class of 2020 will add four members to the hall of fame: Vicki Auditore, Greg Cesario, Dwight Emmert and Linda Riebock. This brings the total number of inductees to 48. There is one criterion for the hall of fame: Someone who has made a significant, long-lasting and positive impact on the Phantom Regiment organization.
VICKI AUDITORE, who was nominated by longtime Phantom Regiment color guard member Geri Williams-Jenkins, was a member of Phantom Regiment’s color guard in 1976-1978 after marching for several years in her hometown Chevaliers from Waterloo, Iowa.
Vicki would join the instructional staff – of both the drum corps and the winter guard – after her marching days were over, becoming a fixture on the guard staff throughout the 1980s and into the 1990s. Working with other Phantom Regiment hall of famers, including John Brazale, Cindi Baumgartner and Greg Cesario, the staff produced color guards at the highest level of the activity, including a high color guard trophy at the Drum Corps International World Championships in 1988 and back-to-back Winter Guard International championships in 1979 and 1980.
In her nomination letter, Geri said of Vicki, “She touched the souls and helped shape the lives of so many in the Phantom Regiment Phamily as a performer, a teacher and an inspiring, strong woman in the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s.”
Vicki battled breast cancer for several years. She beat it once, but it returned with a vengeance last year. She died November 10, 2019 at age 62 in Ohio, where she had lived for nearly 15 years. She is survived by her husband of 22 years, Steve, and their daughter, Samantha (19).
Letters of support were written by Deborah Smith and Lori Baker.
GREG CESARIO, who was nominated by Phantom Regiment Hall of Fame designer Tony Hall, was hired as a color guard designer for the 1987 season. During 1987 and 1988, he was credited with creating a guard design that perfectly complemented the music. Additionally, he incorporated movement into the hornline and began integrating the color guard and hornline in a way that enhanced the overall effect of the program.
The color guard choreographed by Greg – with fellow hall of famers Cindi Baumgartner as caption head and Vicki Auditore as an instructor – earned top color guard honors at the 1988 world championships.
In 1996, Greg was hired late in the offseason to write the drill that would go on to help Phantom Regiment win its first Drum Corps International World Championship. Bob Smith wrote in his supporting letter for the nomination that it was Greg’s attention to detail and beautiful staging that brought “Defiant Heart” to life. Bob was then – and is now – the visual caption head for Phantom Regiment.
In his nomination letter, Tony said of Greg’s visual design in 1996: “(It) was everything: beautiful, deliberate, musical, engaging and entertaining.”
And of his choreography in 1987 and 1988, Tony gave one of the highest compliments that can be given a color guard or drill designer, “You could always see what you were hearing.”
An additional letter of support was written by Cindi Baumgartner.
In his professional life, Greg is a retired drill writer and antiques dealer and lives in Chicago. He is a brother of Phantom Regiment and DCI hall of famer Michael Cesario.
DWIGHT EMMERT, who was nominated by Phantom Regiment corps director David Warren, was a member of the Phantom Regiment contrabass section in 1982, 1983 and 1988. However, it’s been his time on the instructional staff since 2005 where he’s made his most substantial contributions.
Dwight was hired prior to the 2005 season to be the visual caption head working with new drill designer Jamey Thompson. It turned out to be a great fit as the corps won high visual effect in 2006 while placing third, second and fourth at the Drum Corps International World Championships in 2005, 2006 and 2007.
In his letter of nomination, David said, “As a member, I had the most respect for Dwight because of his passion and commitment to always pushing himself and the membership to the highest standard possible.”
Dwight’s involvement has also included roles as an instructor, adviser, designer and, currently, education coordinator.
Tony Hall wrote in his letter supporting the nomination, “(Dwight) doesn’t seek the spotlight … He has had a tremendously positive impact on Phantom Regiment and has greatly enhanced the overall experience of our staff and members for years.”
An additional letter of support for David’s nomination was written by Dwight’s brother, Jay Emmert, with whom he instructed and served as co-caption head. Dwight has three brothers who marched in Phantom Regiment: Grady, Ron and Jay. His sister, Greta, was a member of the staff.
In his professional life, Dwight is the fine arts director for the Evansville Vanderburgh Corporation school district. He lives in Evansville, Ind.
LINDA RIEBOCK, who was nominated by Phantom Regiment Hall of Fame volunteer Bill Riebock, first joined the Phantom Regiment organization as a volunteer in 1985 when her daughters became part of Phantom Regiment Pre-Cadets.
Her daughters, Sarah and Becky, would later march in Phantom Regiment Cadets and Phantom Regiment. While her daughters aged out, Linda never did. She has been a volunteer and board member for most of the past 35 years.
In her letter supporting the nomination, Phantom Regiment Hall of Fame cook Becky Nelson, said, “Her dedication and willingness to serve is admirable. She sets an example that would behoove many of us to follow.”
Linda’s contributions over the years are many and varied: head bus chaperone, show coordinator for Show of Shows, member of the board of directors, current medical director as well as a volunteer who does whatever is needed at the moment. Among her highlights was Dollar Days, a fundraiser she created in 1987 with the help of fellow hall of famer Kathy Vigna and the board of directors. Corps members simply went door to door in Rockford asking for a $1 donation. The event raised $10,000.
An additional letter of support was written by Rebecca Fahrney.
In her professional life, Linda is a retired nurse and lives in Rockford, Ill.
For more information about the Phantom Regiment Hall of Fame and to view a list of past recepients, visit regiment.org/hof.