2019-2020 Silver Taps Dates
Alisa Ross – Homeland Security Certificate, Bush School of Government and Public Services
Vladimir N. Yelkhimov – Chemistry
William “Zach” Zachary Elder – Petroleum Engineering
Jon Adrian Perrott – Ag Leadership, Education & Communication
Andrew Evan Brightwell – Geographic Information Science & Technology
Lela Justeen Burney – Kinesiology
Maegan Ellen Sanders – Management Information Systems
Wesley Donald Sanders – Business Honors
About Silver Taps
Silver Taps is one of the oldest and finest traditions of the Texas A&M student body. No other institution has ever devised such a simple yet eloquent tribute to one of its departed members. Silver Taps is an expression of the great heart of Texas A&M. This information is provided so that you may know more about this cherished and honored tradition.
Silver Taps is that final tribute paid to an Aggie who, at the time of their death, was enrolled in graduate or undergraduate courses at Texas A&M. It began in 1898 when the first Silver Taps was held in honor of Lawrence Sullivan Ross. The ceremony was observed in front of Old Main until it burned in 1912, and then in front of Goodwin Hall until 1918 when it was moved to the present site, in front of the Academic Building.
Over time, new traditions have been added to Silver Taps. In the 1920’s, the flag was placed at half-staff the day of Silver Taps. The special music "Silver Taps," composed by Colonel Richard J. Dunn, was played by two buglers during the 1930’s. This haunting arrangement is not formally written; it is passed from bugler to bugler. The chimes, which play prior to Silver Taps, were rung from 1955 to 1973. They were resumed in 1975 after the renovation of the Memorial Student Center. Formerly, Silver Taps was observed as soon as possible after the death of an Aggie. Today it is held on the first Tuesday of each month from September to April, if necessary.
The ceremony begins on the day of Silver Taps when the flag in front of the Academic Building is placed at half-staff. Notices are posted at the Memorial Student Center, Evans Library, and at the base of the flagpole in front of the Academic Building. At 10:15 p.m., chimes from the Albritton Bell Tower begin to play. The ceremony begins at 10:30 p.m. as the Ross Volunteers Firing Squad marches in slow cadence to the statue of Lawrence Sullivan Ross. Three volleys are fired. "Silver Taps" is played by six buglers three times – to the North, West, and South. This concludes the ceremony, but not the feelings of respect and honor.
With respect, the ceremony of Silver Taps is dedicated to the deceased Aggie and is a solemn and serious event. Some important observances must be remembered:
- The area in front of the Sul Ross statue and the Academic Building is reserved for the friends and family of the deceased.
- Aggies do not stand or sit on the benches lining the walkway between the flagpole and the Sul Ross Statue.
- The darkness and quiet, which cover the campus, emphasize the mood for Silver Taps. Aggies help to retain this tranquility by covering windows, keeping noise to a minimum, and walking to and from the ceremony without talking.
- The name of the deceased Aggie is posted on the flagpole base during the day of Silver Taps.
If you have questions or would like more information about Silver Taps, please contact Student Assistance Services at 979.845.3113.
Previous Silver Taps Ceremony Honorees
Ms. Emily Lynn Chaffin – Finance
Mr. Thomas “Tom” Pierce Followwill – Construction Science
Mr. William Montgomery “Monty” Gano – Agricultural Economics
Mr. Noah Joseph Gunhouse – Construction Science
Mr. Erik Kyle Hanson – General Studies
Mr. Grant Jacson Hernandez – Finance
Mr. Andrew Keith Kalinke – Political Science
Mr. Van Le – Petroleum Engineering
Mr. Joseph William Little – Blinn TEAM
Ms. Hannah Michalski – Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences
Mr. Mehrzad Monzavi – Mathematics
Ms. Kristen Lane Moss – Health Promotion and Community Health Science
Mr. Adolfo Payan – Meteorology
Ms. Sophie Pearl Rosenberg – Mechanical Engineering
Mr. Alan Chuong Ton – Biomedical Sciences
Ms. Anna Dryden Wegener – Biomedical Sciences
Mr. Mark Christopher Wilson – Chemical Engineering
Mr. Ryan Daniel Aleksandrowicz – Mechanical Engineering
Ms. Candace Renee Benefiel – English
Mr. Nikhil Bhatia – Biological & Agricultural Engineering
Mr. Brian Edward Bullock – Ocean Engineering
Mr. Jacob Michael Cahoon – Veterinary Medicine
Mr. Marc Portell Elizondo – General Engineering
Ms. Sarah Elizabeth Flanagan – Chemical Engineering
Mr. Matthew Austin Gaikema – Applied Mathematical Sciences & Computer Science
Mr. John “Johnny” William Holden Jr. – Petroleum Engineering
Mr. Benjamin Langston Hopper – Molecular & Cell Biology
Ms. Megan Bernadette Howe – Health
Ms. Sapphire Marie Jones – Psychology
Ms. Caroline St. Clair Killian – Marketing
Mr. Amogh Shrikant Kulkarni – Industrial Distribution
Mr. Mahmoud Yakub Ma’Aruf – EPI & Environmental Health
Mr. Dustin Cole McEntire – Engineering
Mr. Kyle Alan Novikoff – General Engineering
Ms. Shalini Singh – Epidemiology & Biostatistics