Silver Taps: Personal Experiences

"From the outside looking in, you can't understand it. From the inside looking out, you can't explain it." This is what we as Aggies have said for years. Growing up as an Aggie fan, I am no stranger to those asking questions trying to understand our traditions. From standing the entire football game, to our heckling at baseball. From not walking on the grass in front of the MSC, to Howdy. Midnight Yell and everything else that represents what it is to be the Proudest Member of the Fightin' Texas Aggie family. But none of these compares to how we celebrate our own, not in life, but in passing. 

This last two weeks has been hard for my family. We lost a dear friend of ours, Jon Perrott. Jon was a lot of things. He was first and foremost a Christian man. A sold out unapologetic believer in the Christ Jesus. He was a Husband and father. He was a dedicated worker. He was a deacon. He was a friend. 

Jon was also an Aggie. With only a few months left, he was scheduled to graduate with his Doctorate in Ag Leadership and Communications for Texas A&M University. Getting his coveted Aggie ring about a year ago. He carried a 3.9 GPA while also working a full time job, being a parent who always had time for his kids and prayed with them not stop, being a husband, being involved in our church and teaching Sunday School to kindergartners. 

When Jon passed away our community lost a man who was the epitome of the Aggie Core Values.

I knew as a friend and an Aggie, I had to be there for when he was Honored by Silver Taps. So I hired a baby sitter to come and watch my kids and made sure I was there with my friend Lisa (his wife). 

Those of you who have followed our company through our facebook page as well as our website are familiar with not only our love for Texas A&M University, but our passion for Silver Taps and Muster. You have seen our involvement in Spirit Plaza. So you can begin to (or if your an Aggie you fully) understand the importance of Silver Taps and being there when it is played to honor a loved one. 

Yesterday I attended Taps for my friend. It had been some time since the last time I was at Taps. As I sat there thinking about Jon, I had several thoughts. I thought what a shame it is that all of these things we do to honor one another are things where the person being honored would love to be there. Jon would have loved to be there seeing that. I also realized the beauty of it. The silence of a thousand students present is amazing. The stillness. The precision of the cadets. The sound of the Ross Volunteers (RVs) marching in. 

When we speak of traditions, there is nothing like Silver Taps. Recently my wife and I attended the A&M vs. Clemson game. We were told that there was not better tradition in College Football than Clemson players running down the hill. I saw it and was not impressed. I have heard that the greatest tradition is the dotting of the "i" in Ohio for OSU. Ehh. No offense to them, but I just don't understand it. But outside of football, off the field, nothing comes close. You can not verbally express how impactful it is to be there and watch the RVs fire a 21 gun salute and hearing taps played in the background is. All while under complete darkness. The only thing that lit the area was the light of the crescent moon over head. 

It makes me even more proud to be an Aggie. There is no greater tradition on a college campus than Silver Taps. 

And to my friend Jon Perrott. We will be there for Muster on April 21st to say 'Here' for you at the Roll Call for the Absent. We miss you Buddy.

Here.

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3. Sharen Gilleland wrote:
What a beautiful tribute to our dear friend Jon. He was such an amazing man & we too loved him dearly as we also love his precious family...Lisa, Micah & Zoe.

Mon, November 18, 2019 @ 8:56 AM

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