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Memorial Day – Bruce Explains The Meaning Behind Taps

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At some point between the barbeque, baseball, softball, graduation, Cajun Heartland State Fair, car racing and yard work I hope you will stop to remember. Remember what this three day weekend is really all about. While those items I have mentioned certainly play a part in our American enjoyment of our freedoms, it is because so many gave their lives that we get to play.

You’ve probably heard the song Taps. It’s often played by a solo trumpeter or bugler. It’s haunting melody will put a lump in the throat of any red blooded American. It is the song that is often played at military funerals and remembrance ceremonies. It is often our final good-bye to a fallen hero.

The custom of playing Taps at military funerals dates back to the mid 1800’s. When a solider in Captain John Tidball’s company died. The Captain wanted this young man to buried with full military honors but his request to fire three shots over the fallen soldier’s grave was denied. He instead ordered that Taps be played and a tradition was born.

Memorial Day remembrance services are planned at Greenlawn Memorial Cemetery and Lafayette Memorial Park Cemetery this Monday Memorial Day. Congressman Charles Boustany will be the featured speaker at Lafayette Memorial Park at 3pm. You can rest assured that these ceremonies will feature the solemn and somber tones of Taps.

The song was arranged in its present form by General Daniel Butterfield. The song is often referred to as “Butterfield’s Lullaby” . The song is made up musically from the C Major triad, the notes C, E, and G are the only notes needed. You may not know that there are lyrics written for the song, they were composed by Horace Lorenzo Trim:

Listen While You Read The Words Below

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 near
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.


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