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TAPS: An Official Part of Honors Received at a Military Funeral

Updated on April 22, 2016
Faith Reaper profile image

Theresa is married to her high school sweetheart. She loves writing of her family and experiences in life.

"Its strains are melancholy, yet full of rest and peace. Its echoes linger in the heart long after its tones have ceased to vibrate in the air." ---Rod Powers

THE Bugler's Cry - The Origin of Sounding Taps

No Official Lyrics for Taps


The following unofficial verse is often used (author unknown).


Fading light dims the sight, And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright. From afar drawing nigh -- Falls the night.


Day is done, gone the sun, From the lake, from the hills, from the sky; All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.


Then good night, peaceful night, Till the light of the dawn shineth bright; God is near, do not fear -- Friend, good night.


United States Army Center for Military History


The Glorious and Somber Melody of Taps


Taps, a haunting melody that is uniquely American. When it is heard playing around the world, it is immediately recognized and universally known as an American call. Surprisingly, Taps was not intended to be used as a funeral ballad. Taps origin dates back to the Civil War.


Desiring a more melodious tune for the end of the day (lights out), General Butterfield of the U.S. Army in 1835, had taken the Scotts Tattoo and changed the notes to longer drawn out notes, with the bottom note being taken out. Taps was then played to signal the end of the day of battle.


The decision to use Taps at a burial ceremony arises out of necessity, shorty after the creation of Taps, when a Captain in the Artillery Company, who was afraid that others hearing the firing of the three traditional volleys, during a funeral for one of his men who was killed, would think that fighting had renewed. So he had a bugler sound the notes of Taps instead. This is the first time on record that Taps was sounded at a funeral. After the Civil War, Taps was played at funerals all the time. It was not until 1981,Taps officially became recognized in manuals as being part of military funerals.


U.S. Army Bugler

File: U.S. Army Spc. Michael Darcy, bugler, 4th Infantry Division Band, plays taps in remembrance of fallen warriors during Mountain Post Warrior Memorial Ceremony at Kit Carson Park, Colo., May 23 130523-A-QF214302.jpd
File: U.S. Army Spc. Michael Darcy, bugler, 4th Infantry Division Band, plays taps in remembrance of fallen warriors during Mountain Post Warrior Memorial Ceremony at Kit Carson Park, Colo., May 23 130523-A-QF214302.jpd | Source

Playing of Taps


Veterans receive special honors at their funerals, if they or their families request these honors. It does not matter whether the veteran died in action or not, all veterans certainly deserve special attention.


The playing of Taps is included as part of the special Military honors. After the honor guard presents the deceased veteran’s loved ones with the burial flag, a bugle player will play Taps.


Sadly, there are fewer military bugle players in existence in the modern-day military. If a bugle player is not available, many families request a bugle player from a local Boy Scout troop, high school band or church music group. As a last resort, if none of these options can be worked out, the family may request the playing of a previously recorded version of Taps.


Arlington National Cemetery

File: Arlington National Cemetery 2011 4.jpg Author: Wknight94  21 May 2011 GFDL  CC-BY-SA-3.0
File: Arlington National Cemetery 2011 4.jpg Author: Wknight94 21 May 2011 GFDL CC-BY-SA-3.0 | Source

My Dad

My Dad
My Dad | Source
Me and my dad.
Me and my dad. | Source

One Somber Day Long Ago


On November 5th, so long ago, on a somber, overcast, cool day of drizzling rain, my family and I sat looking at a flag-draped casket. That is one memory that will forever remain rooted in the recesses of my mind; those brilliant colors of our country's flag popping against the gray skies of that day which seemed to envelope one all around and reach down to the very ground, damp and cold.


Then too, I remember being almost mesmerized by the young honor guard member who deftly and with such great care, began to fold the flag. Once folded, he began to move and my eyes followed him to where he stood directly in front of my dear mother and with great respect, presented the flag to my mother. I can still see my mother's trembling hands taking the flag from the young honor guard. I heard my mother say, in a faint whisper of a voice, "Thank you."


The most stirring memory of that somber day, is when that lone bugler began to play the haunting melody of Taps. Those first three notes set the tone. The quote above states it so eloquently for truly its echoes linger in the heart. Anyone who has attended a U.S. Military funeral, can attest to just how hearing Taps being played during this emotional time, most assuredly brings a tear to one's eye. Even those most hardened of hearts, when they hear the haunting melody of Taps being played, will begin to cry.


At one point, I looked up and noticed in the distance a bit, a seven-person firing party. When it came time for them to perform the standard rifle salute, shooting off three volleys of rifle fire, I remember being startled each time as the shots rang out and cracked the silence and stillness in the air.


Fort Benning, Georgia Main Cemetery - Where My Dad Is Buried

A markerFort Benning, Georgia Main Cemetery -
Fort Benning, Cusseta, GA 31905, USA
get directions

Draping of the Casket with the American Flag

Source

Draping of the Funeral Flag


Prior to the start of the ceremony, service members drape the American flag over the closed casket, making it present throughout the entire ceremony. In most cases, no flower arrangements rest on top of the casket, but some families may wish to request a crescent-shaped arrangement from the florist to place on the open lid of the coffin in the upper-left corner.


Presentation of the Flag

reddit.com
reddit.com | Source

Flag Folding and Presentation


An honor guard of two or more members of the military is provided by the Department of Defense. At least one member will be from the branch in which the veteran served. At the grave site, once the burial service concludes, the honor guard member from the veteran’s parent branch folds the funeral flag and presents it to the veteran’s family.


Standard Rifle Salute

Source

An Additional Honor May Include a Standard Rifle Salute


A local Veterans Service Organization (VSO), in cooperation with the Department of Defense, may perform a military rifle salute if available and requested by the family. The standard rifle salute consists of a seven-person firing party shooting off three volleys of rifle fire.


POLL

Have you ever been present and heard TAPS being played at a U.S. Military funeral?

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Veterans' Day Will Always Have Special Significance


Veterans' Day has always had a special significance in my heart because of my dad and all other veterans who are serving or who have served our country.


Since the events of last Veterans' Day in 2012 that transpired which directly impacted my life on that very day, and I lived to tell about it, I am truly honored to have been asked to share my story of that unforgettable day in the publication of an e-book, which helps veterans suffering from PTSD. Such a cause is near and dear to my heart because of my dad.


Many wonderful writers have also contributed their true life accounts, which all make for fascinating reading, both for not only mysterious encounters and happenings, but for those miraculous encounters, which is truly what I consider what happened to me on the 2012 Veterans' Day holiday to be, a miraculous encounter. God bless our veterans!


© Copyright Faith Reaper, November 12, 2013

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    • Faith Reaper profile image
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      Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

      Hi ABR,

      Wow, that is certainly a great honor! What a beautiful and moving combination of Amazing Grace and then Taps. I know there was not a dry eye. That is so interesting that playing Taps changed the way you see Amazing Grace.

      Thank you for sharing here.

      God bless you.

    • Abrushing1968 profile image

      Aaron Rushing 2 years ago from USA- Florida

      I have had the honor of playing taps at a memorial service. They asked me to play Amazing Grace first and then Taps. It was very emotional and very powerful. Playing taps after amazing Grace changed the way I see Amazing Grace. Taps made the song.

      ABR

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dolores,

      Yes, Taps is certainly moving at a military funeral and it will stay with me forever.

      Thank you so much for reading and leaving such kind comments.

      Have a lovely evening

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 3 years ago from East Coast, United States

      Thanks for sharing the story behind the playing of Taps at military funerals. There is nothing as moving as a military funeral. I am sure that the beautiful tribute to your father during his funeral will stay with you forever.

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Shyron, I did not think you were doing so in adding more information. I learned that there are different false accounts going around is why I mentioned such. I appreciate you reading and commenting. I am grateful to your family for their service and sorry for the sacrifices your family suffered for our country. God bless you and yours too, Faith Reaper.

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 3 years ago from Texas

      Faith, I am in no way questioning the accuracy of the information you have, and I am sorry if it sounded that way. My information came from a newspaper article that was about military funerals. I read that there were lyrics to Taps, and I wanted to know the words. That is when I checked with Snops, this is the information I got. That was at least more than 20 years ago.

      God Bless you and yours also.

      Shyron

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hello sujaya venkatesh,

      Thank you for much for reading!

      God bless you,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Shyron,

      Thank you so much for reading and I am glad this hub is one of your favorites! The lyrics I obtained were from the United States Army Center for Military History. There are a lot of different stories of how taps came to be played at military funerals, and the one here in my hub is said to be the actual way it came about. Thank you for sharing about your family members' service. God bless you and yours.

      In His Love,

      Faith Reaper

    • sujaya venkatesh profile image

      sujaya venkatesh 3 years ago

      very informative faith

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 3 years ago from Texas

      Faith, this is another hub that just became one of my favorites.

      Taps, Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the Civil War when Union Army Captain Robert Ellicombe was with his men near Harrison's Landing in Virginia. The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land.

      During the night, Captain Ellicombe heard the moans of a soldier who lay severely wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier. The Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling his toward his encampment.

      When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead.

      The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was, his own son. The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Without telling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army.

      The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiors to give his son a full military burial, despite his enemy status. His request was only partially granted. The Captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral. The request was turned down since the soldier was a confederate.

      But out of respect for the father, they did say they could give him only one musician. The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of the dead youth's uniform.

      This wish was granted.

      The words for the haunting melody, we now know as "Taps" used at military funerals was born.

      Day is done. Gone the sun.

      From the lakes, From the hills,

      From the sky, All is well.

      Safely rest. God is nigh!

      Fading light. Dims the sight.

      And a star, Gems the sky.

      Gleaming bright from afar.

      Drawing nigh. Falls the night

      Thanks and praise. For our days.

      Neath the sun, Neath the stars

      Neath the sky. As we go.

      This we know. God is Nigh

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear PS,

      Wow, thank you for sharing here. What a heartwarming story about your dad. I am thankful for your dad and nephews's service to our country. That would make a beautiful hub story for sure!

      I know you are so proud.

      I appreciate the votes up.

      God bless you and yours.

      Hugs, love and Angels on the ways as always,

      Faith Reaper

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 3 years ago from sunny Florida

      So glad you have showcased Taps. My father was a flying ace and served proudly this country he so loved. Each day we had a flag raising and lowering ceremony...and in the evening he would hum Taps as the flag came down.

      When my Daddy died my Mother was given a flag which now hangs in my home. It was a most emotional time as my nephew who was in the Marine Corps saluted her as she was receiving it.

      As the strains of Taps played, we were saddened but so proud of his service and the gift of love for our country that he instilled in us.

      Thank you again for this article. Voted up +++

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Thank you for your Dad's service. I appreciate you reading.

      Blessings, Faith Reaper

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      All of these things happened at my father's funeral. I received the flags and the shell casings.

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Martie,

      So lovely to see you stopping by to read! Thank you for your kind words here.

      Oh, I am thrilled you are supporting our veterans with PTSD. You will enjoy reading all of the amazing true stories by awesome writers indeed!

      Hugs and much love to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 3 years ago from South Africa

      Moving hub, Faith, and awesome picture of your dad. Taps is indeed a very sad melody.

      I am still reading my copy of Mysterious & Miraculous Book I. May the income makes a difference in the lives of many veterans suffering from PTSD.

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Angela (quildon),

      Thank you so much for reading. I appreciate your kind words. Yes, many have paid the ultimate price.

      God bless,

      Faith Reaper

    • quildon profile image

      Angela Joseph 3 years ago from Florida

      This is a somber and moving hub, Faith Reaper. I've never attended a military funeral, but reading about your dad's funeral makes me feel like I was there. I don't think this country can ever repay the debt it owes to our veterans. Thanks for sharing this with us.

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear teaches,

      Thank you so much for reading. Yes, deeply moving indeed. I do love the words as well. I appreciate you sharing here.

      God bless you too, lovely one,

      Faith Reaper

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      We have heard the song at several of our family funerals. It is a beautiful tribute to their serving our country but it is also very deeply moving to listen to as it is played. Thanks for posting the words to the song. I never really knew what they were and it is so beautiful. God bless you, dear lady.

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hello Writer Fox,

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read and glad to know you were moved. Yes, Memorial Day is also a perfect for such hubs indeed.

      I appreciate the votes up

      Blessings,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Liz (epbooks),

      Thank you for reading! Yes, for sure ... hearing Taps is very emotional indeed and stirs the heart and brings a tear to one's eye. Oh, wow, I know that was a beautiful small ceremony there at the tomb of the unknown soldier in Arlington Cemetery.

      Hugs and blessings to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

    • Writer Fox profile image

      Writer Fox 3 years ago from the wadi near the little river

      Reading this article is truly a moving experience. I hope to come back to it again on Memorial Day in May. Voted up and awesome!

    • epbooks profile image

      Elizabeth Parker 3 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      Hearing Taps is definitely an emotional experience. I get tears in my eyes every time I hear it. I just visited Arlington Cemetery last weekend and witnessed a small ceremony at the unknown tomb. It was beautiful. Thank you for sharing this.

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Vinaya,

      So great to see you stopping by to read. Wow, thank you so much for sharing about your country men. I am sorry you had to see war so up close, especially for 10 years.

      Hugs,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Angelia (femme),

      So wonderful to see you here stopping by to read! Wow, thank you for sharing of all of your experience in this area. What a wonderful organization, Buglers Across America, especially being buglers are so few in the Military now and are stretched so thin.

      Thank you so much for leaving such wonderful comments. You're the best! I appreciate you so much.

      Hugs, Faith Reaper

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal

      My country men have fought in Afghanistan as well as in the world wars. I have often heard first had war stories, but never seen war so close until my country went through 10 years of civil war.

    • profile image

      femmeflashpoint 3 years ago

      Faith Reaper,

      You've done a beautiful job in putting this together and I have no doubt that many of your readers will find they have a very personal connection with the content.

      I appreciate that you've taken the time to educate about the history of a melody that is all too familiar for many people. However, I think for most folks, once TAPS is heard, it's not forgotten and tends to produce blended emotions of sadness and pride.

      As a funeral director, I've worked with a wonderful group on many committal services for veterans. Their organization is called Buglers Across America and they do an outstanding job.

      Many, if not most, of them are veterans and they play TAPS traditionally, on a bugle as opposed to a trumpet. They will play for anyone who was honorably discharged from military service, and will usually travel up to 100 miles.

      Thanks so much for writing such a special article that brings attention to a time-honored tradition, and to keep its origins from fading.

      Much appreciated. :)

      femme

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear deergha,

      So great to see you here! Thank you so much for reading and leaving such wonderful comments. I am so glad it was useful.

      I appreciate the vote up and share.

      Hugs,

      Faith Reaper

    • dghbrh profile image

      deergha 3 years ago from ...... a place beyond now and beyond here !!!

      Very useful and interesting hub dear Faith. You are doing an awesome work here. Thanks for this share. I have learnt many new things from this hub of yours. Votes way up and shared.

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hello JPSO138,

      So nice to meet you! I am glad you have stopped by to read here this day. Thank you for your most generous comments here as to this hub.

      I glanced at one of your hubs about yourself, and I thank you for all you do too. I will soon visit your side of HP Town for sure!

      Blessings, Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Crafty,

      Thank you for reading and leaving such kind words. Yes, it is so very sad, especially when it is one so very young indeed, as you have mentioned! They are, as you say, both beautiful and sad.

      Hugs and blessings to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Kathleen,

      So great to see you reading here, and thank you so much for that reassurance, for it would truly be a sad state of affairs if it were the case. I do remember now, that it was, I believe, that I heard it on my commute home from work in the city on Faith Radio, where they were discussing this issue of those not being able to speak of their faith without fear of possible discipline. My prayer is that this will never become reality, for it is exactly the freedoms veterans are fighting for indeed. I appreciate the reassurance. I am thankful for your husband and father-in-law's service.

      I, too, am sorry for the loss of your mother after last Christmas. I will keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers too. I am glad you were able to spend Christmas with her last year. It was my family's tradition, being my mother's birthday was on December 16th, that we all gather together with my mother around or on her birthday and celebrate Christmas too. When she became so very sick on Veterans' Day last year and then we were able to have so many special times from that day forward to her birthday, where she was so happy and smiling and getting so strong that they even said she was going to be able to go home. We celebrated her 84th birthday, and then four days later, she went on to be with the Lord on December 20th. It had been my prayer since Veterans' Day, when they gave her just three days to live, and she had improved from death's door that very Veterans' Day night, and woke up the very next morn, just as bright-eyed as ever, talking and smiling ... all those at the hospital were amazed. It was a miracle and answer to prayer that my family and I were able to have that special time with her when her mind seemed to no longer have dementia. It was a true blessing from above that we were able to celebrate her Birthday/Christmas all together as a family. She was gone just four days after that, right before Christmas.

      My dad was Infantry too, and yes, it is hallowed ground for sure there at Ft. Benning.

      God bless you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Aw, now, Dearest drbj,

      You have brought the tears ... I am so sorry for your great loss of your youngest son (a police detective) ... I cannot even imagine ...

      Yes, precious heart, as Frank mentioned in his comment too, about the fallen police servicemen and women, having Taps played too at their funerals. I would not want to have to have first learned of such by suffering such a great loss.

      My heart goes out to you and your family, please know.

      I am also sorry about the loss of your mother too at Christmas. It seems there is a lot of loss for some reason around Christmas. Yes, we do feel her love all around, especially at Christmas.

      Peace and Love to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Frank,

      Always blessed when you stop by to read on whatever day you are able to do so is fine with me. Thank you for mentioning about our wonderful servicemen and women in law enforcement, where Taps is also played for those who have fallen. I believe you are the first to mention the police officers, and I thank you for doing so. Yes, they are also brave men and women without a doubt.

      I am glad you like the history and the feel of this hub. I am happy you were touched.

      Bless you too dear one,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Gail (Happyboomernurse),

      Thank you so much for reading. I appreciate your lovely comments here.

      I also want to thank you so much for all the work you have put into the Mysterious & Miraculous project too, and with the inclusion of your beautiful story, Catalyst, will deeply touch and bless all who read! My prayer is that this project will be far-reaching, more than any of us can even imagine to bless those veterans in ways we can never even imagine!

      I appreciate the vote up and more.

      Hugs and love to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi MsDora,

      Always so nice to see you stopping by to read. Thank you for your comments, and I am glad you have heard of it living in the Caribbean. Yes, it would have a much greater significance to the family of a veteran for sure, and I am glad you feel the significance.

      God bless you,

      Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi, my dear and loving friend, Maria,

      You are such a blessing to all who know you and call you friend! Thank you for your lovely comments, as always. I was thinking about Veterans' Day and all of the veterans, really. Then that glorious, yet somber melody just came into my mind, which had me thinking about just exactly when did it become a part of the U.S. Military funeral, as memories flooded back into my mind while I was sitting there during my dad's Military funeral.

      Oh, for sure, I am always on board for any project that supports helping veterans with PTSD. I want to thank you, Angelia, Alastar and all others who have been working so hard on this project and I know without a doubt, K9s for Wounded Warriors is an excellent program which is helping veterans at this very moment in healing from the trauma of war.

      Yes, I did see and hear it first-hand as a child, and so my heart goes out to those who suffer with PTSD, and even those who are not veterans, such as yourself, precious heart. Your story is a powerful one, and I thank my God you are here to tell your story and that you have healed from the trauma you have personally experienced. You are such an amazing person, and I am honored to know a woman of such high integrity and character, especially one who is able to love others. I know you are here for a reason, and you are fulfilling your purpose on this Earth by using your God-given gifts to help others. I was moved to tears when reading your story on your site of the young female veteran you have helped tremendously through your gift of loving someone unconditionally, coupled with your experience and training in nursing.

      Thank you for being you,

      Love,

      Faith Reaper

    • JPSO138 profile image

      JPSO138 3 years ago from Cebu, Philippines, International

      I am speechless after reading your hub. It is indeed very touching and well written. I also learned a lot.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Such a beautiful Hub Faith! It brings tears to my eyes because it reminds me of the funeral I attended for a young military man who died suddenly in an automobile crash. The funeral was so beautiful, but so sad.

    • Kathleen Cochran profile image

      Kathleen Cochran 3 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      " I have read of where service men may not speak of their faith, which is so sad, and I hope that is not truly the case." I can assure you, it is not, as my husband and my father-in-law can attest.

      These are my first holidays without my mother as well. I kissed her goodbye for the last time and got my last hug from her when she left after spending Christmas with us last year. You'll be in my thoughts during these holidays and I pray you have many memories to comfort you.

      Thank you for your family's service to our country and for your father's. My husband was Infantry so I've been to the cemetery at Benning a few times. It is hallowed ground.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 3 years ago from south Florida

      This is a beautiful and very appropriate tribute, Faith, to servicemen and women as well as your dad. I remember hearing Taps played at the funeral of my youngest son (a police detective) when I first learned it it can be heard at police funerals as well as the military.

      My mother died at Christmas time (the 24th) a few years ago, but like yours, we feel she is always with her family during the holidays. Peace and Love.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      I should have read this yesterday.. yeah Taps can be haunting but it is recognized.. they use it for fallen policemen and women too.. I like the histroy and the feel of this somber hub.. Faith you've touched my faith bless you girl :)

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 3 years ago from South Carolina

      Dear Faith Reaper,

      Once again you have touched me to the core with your heart felt and faith filled writing about veterans, military customs and your dad.

      Thank you so much for your efforts to help veterans by spreading the word that 70% of the proceeds from Mysterious & Miraculous Book I will go to K9's for Wounded Warriors. Your story, "Homecoming," in book I was beautiful and uplifting.

      Am voting this hub up across the board except for funny.

      Hugs & Love,

      Gail

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      As a girl, I heard taps in the Caribbean being played by the Defense Force Band. There is something elegant and sophisticated about the melody. Although I may not appreciate it at the same level as an American soldier's kid, I feel the significance. Thank you for sharing all the facts.

    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 3 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Dear, sweet Faith,

      Oh we are in the same place even though miles separate us...

      This tribute gave me chills as I have attended several funerals of wonderful Veterans where TAPS was played. I am fascinated with its origins, which make so much sense as you have described.

      I love the sharing you have done about your Daddy. You got to see the sad aftermath of war at such a young age. This has made you even more compassionate and giving in this woman I call my dear friend today.

      Thank you for being such a positive supporter of the Mysterious and Miraculous project. Love, Maria

    • Faith Reaper profile image
      Author

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Pamela,

      So great to see you here reading! Yes, Taps is very emotional and brings tears to one's eye for sure ... just when one hears those first three notes, so moving. Yes, I believe all veterans whether or not they died in battle, deserve such honors at their funeral if they so request such or their families request such honors, as they sure do deserve them.

      I appreciate your kind words.

      God bless, Faith Reaper

    • Faith Reaper profile image
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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Devika (DDE),

      Thank you so much reading.

      Yes, my dad died long ago and so I included the information about what occurred at the funeral being I am writing about the playing of Taps. Yes, this Christmas will be a bit different with my mother just going to her true home last Christmas.

      Oh, yes, still have my children and grandchildren and family too, so all are a blessing for sure.

      Blessings, Faith Reaper

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      Pamela Oglesby 3 years ago from United States

      I am sorry to hear about the loss of your father, and military funerals really touch your heart. Most anytime I hear Taps being played it brings tears to my eyes. This is a beautifully written of as you shared such personal moments and exactly how a military funeral is conducted. Voted up, awesome, beautiful and shared.

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      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      TAPS: When Did the Playing of TAPS Become an Official Part of the Honors Received at a Military Funeral? It is sad when you don't have parents with you on every other day and in this time when family time is so important but remember you have a big heart and so much to give and have, with those who are still with you.

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Alicia,

      I appreciate you reading and leaving such lovely comments here. Yes, dad died so very long ago, much too early though. And, yes, this Christmas will be a bit difficult, being my mother went on to her true home just last Christmas.

      I love the Christmas season, for it is truly a joyous time for me and my family, especially with the blessings of my three grandchildren. Somehow Christmas seems more like Christmas when there are little ones around, at least to me. Even though, my mother is no longer here, we have peace about it in knowing she is now truly home. She certainly was the strongest woman I have ever known in my life and the sweetest person on the whole planet too. We were blessed to have her for a mother and my dad was too, to have such a lovely one with a beautiful heart of understanding as a wife.

      Yes, I thought this day was best to publish this hub, of course.

      Have a great rest of the week!

      Hugs and blessings to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Genna,

      Thank you so much for reading. Yes, Taps is so haunting of a melody and truly lingers in the heart. I appreciate the kindness always in your comments. I am thankful for your Uncle's service.

      All those who serve deserve such honors if they so desire them.

      Blessings and love to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

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      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is a beautiful and very touching hub, Faith. It's also interesting, informative and very suitable for today's remembrances. I'm sorry that you have lost your father and mother, especially since your mother passed on so recently. I hope your Christmas is as happy as possible. Blessings to you, Faith.

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      Genna East 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      A very timely hub, Faith, and beautifully written. I have only attended one military funeral; it was for an uncle who gave so much of his life to duty and country. The playing of Taps always brings to my mind a bittersweet sadness s that is so haunting. I’m sorry that you had to experience, first hand, what this represents. Pride and honor is part of this ceremony, as well it should be. Blessings to you, Faith, and your family, and in memory of your father and mother who both rest in love and peace.

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Oh, wow, Flourish, you were certainly married in a most beautiful place. I found on Wikimedia Commons, the Berkeley Plantation and that Georgian Mansion of 1726 ... very lovely, but did not find an image of the historic marker.

      Blessings, Faith Reaper

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Thanks Flourish. I had that in my notes, but wasn't sure to include about that terrible Seven Days Battle over Richmond. Then that is when Butterfield wanted to change the sound of it because it sounded too military because his poor men after those long hot days in the mud and fighting off dysentery and such needed something more melodious for sure to end the day.

      Hmm, I will have to try to find a photo on wiki maybe of that marker at historic Berkeley Plantation overlooking the James River and maybe add it here.

      Hugs to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      You are right! The marker is at historic Berkeley Plantation overlooking the James River. It's located between Richmond and Williamsburg, VA. Hugs to you.

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Thank you so much dear Romeos. You are most kind without a doubt.

      I may need to dig all of that up about my grandfather. We have a couple of newspaper articles and such. Well, he started out a smart one, but alas with the head injuries ...

      LOL on the cape part .... hehehe my brother may think of another kind of cape : 0

      Blessings,

      Faith Reaper

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Flourish,

      Always lovely when you stop by to read and leave such interesting comments. I am thankful for your dad's service as well!

      Thank you for sharing that about your wedding, how interesting and, yes, one would not want that to go off during your wedding vows! Yes, that terrible Seven Days battle in 1862 at Harrison's Landing over the capitol of Richmond, I believe it was.

      My dad was in Korea and Viet Nam, and he was just a young one when he enlisted for sure, as are most soldiers!

      Appreciate you sharing here.

      Have a great rest of the week.

      Hugs, Faith Reaper

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Wetnose!

      Always so great to see you stopping by to read. Yes, I thought today would be the best day to publish such on the history of Taps at military funerals.

      Give all the wetnoses a big hug and sloppy kiss from me.

      Hugs, Faith Reaper

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      Romeos Quill 3 years ago from Lincolnshire, England

      It must be that little bit harder if your relationship was close....so sorry for you sweet Faith, but as you have emphatically relayed, she is in her true home now :)

      With regards to your relatives,that would sure be a great story to write about Faith, of your grandfather's adventures in Her Majesty's Royal Air Force - Yale? Must have been a smart cookie, and sounds absolutely fascinating.

      I love your attitude Superwoman, and I hope that the father of the heavenly lights brings you your tailor-made cape this festive season :)

      Loving Regards,

      R.Q.

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      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Such a fitting tribute to those who have served and so emotional as well. I'm sorry you do not have your father here with you and I am thankful for his service. My dad is also a Vietnam era veteran. They were so young to have risked so much. Taps was composed at a plantation in Virginia where my husband and I happened to get married. They have a memorial monument and if you push a button it will play the lonely, soulful, melancholy song. During our wedding, we had to arrange for someone to stand at the monument to make sure no one pressed the button during our ceremony, especially the vow part.

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      wetnosedogs 3 years ago from Alabama

      Interesting history on the Taps.

      Thank you for writing this on such a memorable day.

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Romeos,

      Thank you so much. Yes, it seems around Christmas, many families do experience loss. This Christmas will be the first Christmas without my mother, being she went on to her true home last Christmas. My dad died a good long time ago, and my mother lived a good 23 years after his death.

      Thank you for sharing about coming from a military family, how interesting about serving in the parachute regiment, avionics and as medics, wow, that is awesome.

      Yes, some are never the same once they return from battle, with their battle-scarred minds. I am glad the veterans today are able to get help and that all are open and talking about such issues as PTSD for sure!

      I need to do a story on my grandfather, my mother's dad, as he had flown in the Royal British AirForce, after graduating from Yale. My mom has, well had (which we now have) some great photos of him, so dashing when he was very young in his flight suit and standing by his plane of those days! His plane crashed twice, and he lived, but on the last crash, he did not do so well, as his brain was damaged and he was never the same man again either after experiencing such.

      Oh, you are so kind, for I have not faced any more trials than anyone else on this earth for sure. We all have faced many trials of many kinds, and the key is to persevere onward as we are still here, and there is a reason why! I love to just take one day at a time and enjoy this day for none are guaranteed a tomorrow.

      God bless you too dear Romeos and, yes, all servicemen everywhere ... are indeed some of the finest persons of the planet.

      Love and hugs,

      Faith Reaper

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      Romeos Quill 3 years ago from Lincolnshire, England

      Rest In Peace to your loved ones dearest Faith. Christmas can be a funny time for loss ( my dad passed on Dec. 21st ), so I truly sympathize with how you may be feeling at that particular special time of year....' Gone, but not forgotten. ' Overwriting with the celebration of birth is a phenomenal way of overcoming such painful memories. Coming from a military family where four of us served in the parachute regiment, avionics and as medics, can grasp where you're coming from. In my dad's passing-out parade photo of his troop, he pointed out the living, as few returned, and when he came back ( before I was born ), he was a haunted man, never quite the same, and certainly unable to father children properly.

      You've said it all in your darkly reflective write dearest faith, and my heart goes out to you, who have had to face so many difficult trials in your life so far - I really admire you....courageous, loving and simply one of the most wonderful persons I've ever had the privilege of talking to.

      God Bless you Faith, your family, and all servicemen everywhere - some of the finest human beings on the planet.

      Love From,

      Romeo's Quill

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Jo (tobusiness),

      Thank you so much for you kind words. Yes, those first three notes of Taps will get to one's heart real quick for sure!

      I appreciate you reading and hope you have a great rest of the week!

      Love,

      Faith Reaper

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      Jo Alexis-Hagues 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Faith, the perfect tribute. Like Billy, I also feel the chill and goose bumps with the first few notes. Great article, very informative and touching video. An excellent hub. Well done my friend.

      Love Jo.

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Diana Lee,

      I am sorry for your family's loss. My dad was also a Korean and Viet Nam war vet. Yes, my dad suffered with PTSD and I remember as a child listening to him suffer from such. Back then, they did not talk about such much, as they do now, and I am glad the veterans now are able to get the help they need and it is out in the open. Many may came back without visible scars on the outside, but their minds are certainly battle-scarred.

      I am glad your dad found the right doctors and lived long after. My dad died when he was 60, and that is far too young in my mind.

      I appreciate you reading and sharing here.

      Bless you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Marlene,

      I am thankful for your dad's service! I appreciate you sharing about your experience and, yes, Taps, is sure to bring the tears no matter how hard one tries to not cry.

      Taps is both a haunting and glorious melody.

      I appreciate you. Have a great rest of the week.

      God bless, Faith Reaper

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      Diana L Pierce 3 years ago from Potter County, Pa.

      My family also had lost veterans and had military rights given. Somehow it seems like such a small way of saying thank you yet the honor is sacred. I lost my dad in 2003, he was a Korean war vet. His battle was not on the battlefield, but here years after he came home he had to treat a rare blood disorder he got from the shots they were given to travel abroad. Thankfully he found the right doctors and lived well into his seventies. Voted up.

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      Marlene Bertrand 3 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Taps... that song brings tears to my eyes every time I hear it. My dad had a military burial and all through the service I was able to stay composed, but as soon as the song Taps started playing I couldn't be strong any longer. I'm glad to read more about the song here. By the way, I have only heard the "Day is done..." verse of the song. Lots of information here. All good. Thanks, Faith.

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear suzette,

      I am thankful for your dad's service to our country. Thank you for sharing here and I am glad you have the flag that was draped over your dad's casket and seeing it sitting on your desk, provides comfort. We have one of those wooded frames to hold the flag.

      Taps is, as you say, haunting but strangely comforting.

      I am glad you love this hub and found it interesting and informative.

      I hope your week ahead is lovely.

      Blessings to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

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      Suzette Walker 3 years ago from Taos, NM

      Faith: This hub is so interesting as I didn't know the history of playing Taps - so appropriate for Veteran's Day. We had Taps played at my dad's funeral - he was in the Navy during WWII. As you say, it is haunting but strangely comforting - at least it was to me. I felt like, it's okay Dad, you can go underground now and we will all be okay. We had the flag draped casket also and the folding of the flag and presentation to my mom. After we got home, my mom gave Dad's flag to me and I have it sitting on a desk (a family heirloom) in my living room. I am comforted by it every time I look at it. I should get one of those wooded frames to put it in and hang it on the wall. Anyway, I love this hub Faith - thanks for an interesting and informative hub!

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Joelle,

      Thank you so much for reading and leaving such kind words here. Yes, the entire military funeral with honors is so memorable, especially when Taps is played for there is never a dry eye. Yes, the folding and presentation of the flag to the family is so very powerful indeed. I will never forget such myself, and when I see a small child, as you say, being presented with one, those sharp pangs are felt deep in my heart, just knowing that child lost a parent at such a young age.

      God bless you and yours too on this day of remembrance!

      I hope your week ahead is lovely and peaceful as well.

      Blessings,

      Faith Reaper

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      kidscrafts 3 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      Dear Faith, I am so sorry for your loss. Funeral are always a sad event but when it hits closer to home it's even more sad. I find that Taps is a haunting melody but very beautiful! And the ceremony when they fold the flag always bring tears in my eyes and I don't know why. It's a simple but so powerful ceremony! I certainly cry when they give the flag to a child like you have in your pictures because it means that that child has lost a parent and a guide and its life is forever changed on that day.

      Thank you for sharing this story so close to your heart!

      God bless you on this Remembrance Day! I wish you a nice and peaceful week!

      Joelle

      PS : thank you for sharing your beautiful pictures!

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Kim,

      Thank you for your kind words. Yes, a military funeral with all of the special honors is very special indeed and each veteran and their family certainly deserve such honors indeed!

      Have a lovely week ahead.

      Blessings to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Bill,

      Yes, hearing Taps can certainly bring on the goosebumps! It is a memorable sound to say the least.

      I am thankful for your dad's service too.

      Thank you for your kind words here.

      Blessings to you and yours,

      Faith Reaper

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      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Dear Jackie,

      Thank you for your profound comments. I am thankful for your dad's service. I have read of where service men may not speak of their faith, which is so sad, and I hope that is not truly the case. As it is these very men who have fought for our freedoms in this country, and I pray the sacrifices they have endured for our freedom and those freedoms remain, and will not become in vain.

      Yes, Taps is such a glorious and somber melody, and when one hears it played live, it is very memorable to say the least. Tears do come as it stirs the heart.

      I was going to include photos of my dad and mom's grave markers. For when a veteran dies, his wife is buried opposite of her spouse (head-to-head). My sister-in-law, just yesterday, was over that way and stopped and placed a beautiful little Christmas tree with birds on my mother's side of the grave for Christmas. She always loved birds.

      This day brings a lot of memories that are fresh in my mind, not only of my dad, but last year on the Veterans Day holiday (2012) when I had to travel across state lines to be with my sweet mother when they said she did not have long to live. It was such a terrible day of stormy weather, and I know the Lord protected me along the way, especially after doing those three 380s in the middle of the Interstate without being crashed into by a single vehicle. I could feel the presence of angels all around me protecting me then and for the rest of that trip, and even face-to-face in the renting car place and to my final destination of getting to that ICU, where there was another encounter with an angel too. Against all odds, and through much prayer, my mother lived to celebrate her 84th birthday on December 16th and then went on to her true home four days later, on December 20th. So, this Christmas will be a hard one for our family, without our mother, but we know she went to heaven at the best possible time of the year for her ... imagine going to heaven during Christmas!

      I will never forget that Veterans Day and my encounters with angels all along the way.

      My heart is with all the veterans and their families this day.

      God bless you,

      Faith Reaper

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      ocfireflies 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Faith,

      So sorry for your loss. I have attended many funerals, but there are none that compare to a military funeral: the taps, the folding and presentation of the flag... Thank you for this personal, beautiful and most timely hub.

      Many Blessings and Fond Memories of Your Dad,

      Kim

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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I get goosebumps every single time I hear Taps....they played them at my dad's funeral and it is something I still hear today in my mind's ear.

      Interesting and somber hub. Well done my dear.

      blessings always

      bill

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      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      So sad Faith. My dad did not have a military funeral but he was a Veteran and like you I join the wish for God to bless our military that God is being taken away from, or more so His Son, Jesus Christ. The bible and all things Christian (such as speaking of their savior) in this administration have been ripped from their rights and I am so glad our fathers did not see this Faith, they would be so shocked I know.

      Thank you for this beautiful piece, the taps does seem to come right from Heaven, doesn't it? ^