Taps Bugler: Jari Villanueva

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“ Welcome to Tapsbugler! Helping provide Taps for Veterans at military funerals is important to us! Please contact us on information about providing a live bugler to sound Taps at the ceremony for your loved one. Just click on Find A Bugler below. Please explore the website and I hope you come away with a little more knowledge about this great American treasure we have in those 24 notes. ”

Celebrate 150 Years of Taps

Protocol for Taps

PROTOCOL FOR TAPS
INSTRUCTION FOR MILITARY AND CIVILIAN


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Protocol for Taps
Instruction for military and civilian

YOU CAN DOWNLOAD A COPY OF THIS PROTOCOL BY CLICKING HERE

One question I get often is what to do when Taps is sounded. What exactly is the protocol? In a nutshell, it’s the same protocol as when you hear the national anthem.

DEFINITION OF TAPS

Taps is sounded at funerals, memorial services and wreath laying ceremonies. It is also the last call played at US military bases in the evening. Performance consists of 24 notes sounded on a bugle or trumpet. Taps is performed by a solo bugler without accompaniment or embellishment. Although sometimes performed with an echo, Taps is really meant to be sounded by a single bugler.

For more information on the origin of Taps CLICK HERE

At funerals, military honors follow a certain sequence dictated by tradition and protocol. Three rifle volleys are fired, followed by the sounding of Taps. The flag is then folded and presented to the Next-of-Kin.

Sometimes there is not a firing party available and Taps will be sounded upon the signal from the military or funeral home director.

The sequence at Arlington can be found here:
http://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/Funeral-Information/Attending-a-Funeral/Sequence-of-Events-for-Military-Funeral-Honors

At memorial services or special events Taps is usually sounded toward the end of the program, usually before the benediction or dismissal. At wreath laying ceremonies, Taps is usually sounded after the wreath (or last one if there are several) is presented.

CONDUCT DURING THE SOUNDING OF TAPS

During a rendition of Taps at a military funeral, memorial service or wreath laying ceremony,

– All present not in uniform should stand at attention with the right hand over the heart;

– Men not in uniform should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold the headdress at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart;

– Individuals in uniform should give the military salute at the first note of Taps and maintain that position until the last note (note: if you are inside and uncovered, you stand at attention);

– Veterans and active-duty service-members not in uniform may render the hand salute;

– If you are inside and not in uniform it is proper to stand during Taps

– When Taps is sounded in the evening as the final call of the day at military bases, salutes are not required.

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80 Responses to “Protocol for Taps”

  1. Tapsbugler says:

    Render a hand salute after you complete Taps

  2. C/SSgt Dominic Pershin says:

    Hello, I am a bugler for my Civil Air Patrol Squadron I play taps regularly to close out meetings and I’ve played at funerals as well. I have a question about when taps is extinguished. When the last note is played do I render a hand salute after the playing of taps every time is played.

    C/SSgt Pershin, Dominic CAP

  3. Tapsbugler says:

    Not understanding of your question

  4. Phyllis Kelly says:

    Why is the bugler out of sight

  5. Tapsbugler says:

    Yes
    It’s fine for an non-veteran to sound Taps at a funeral
    please refer to our guidelines.
    https://tapsbugler.com/taps-performance-guidelines/

  6. Tapsbugler says:

    If you are on a tour and hear Taps sounded. It would be appropriate to cease talking and face toward the music in silence. Rending a salute (like placing your hand over your heart) is also appropriate.
    You would treat it in the same manner as if you heard the National anthem

    Thanks!

    Jari

  7. I give tours in a cemetery and at times from a distance, will hear TAPS or gun salute, should I and my guests do anything special or symbolic or just remain silent? Thank you.

  8. Jonathan says:

    I’ve been asked to play for a retired USMC friend’s funeral. Is it appropriate for a non-veteran to play taps for a veteran’s church funeral? Is there anything else to be aware of in this situation? Thanks.

  9. Angel Bogart says:

    It’s the first time that I heard about military taps, those bugles sounding during a military ceremony, so I’m really surprised that even civilians are enjoined to stand at attention and hold their right hand over their heart when it gets sounded during a military funeral. I’d like to keep this in mind so if I happen to attend a funeral service for casualties of the war in Afghanistan, I’d be able to conduct myself properly. Not only would this show knowledge of military etiquette, but it would also show respect for the heroism of the American war heroes.

  10. Tapsbugler says:

    Thanks for this story!

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