The Honor-Call is a volunteer organization for student trumpet players. They encourage music organizations to connect with their communities to pay tribute to America’s Military heroes by playing TAPS at funerals and military functions. Milford ISD is the first school in Texas and the only school in Texas to have joined so far.
Mike Trussell (Milford ISD band director) has been associated with BAA (Buglers Across America) since 1980. He has played TAPS for many military funerals and other military events. When Trussell found out that there was an organization like BAA but only for students he was very excited and contacted Honor-Call to see how to get his students involved.
Once Mr. Trussell contacted the Honor-Call organization he signed up Milford ISD. Trussell then had an interview with one of the associates at Honor-Call and Milford ISD was accepted into the organization.
Once you are accepted into the organization your school’s name is added to the list of volunteers to play TAPS. The school is then contacted by email when a trumpet player is needed to perform.
The two Milford ISD students participating in this program are Eric Evans (10th grade) and Jaquay Brown (9th grade). Eric Evans was asked to perform TAPS at Tom Harvey’s funeral. Harvey is his great-grandfather. Eric said, “I was very nervous to perform TAPS at my great-grandfather’s funeral. I was afraid I would make a mistake. I was very proud to be able to honor him and grant him his wish to have TAPS played at his funeral.”
Jaquay Brown wants to have a career in the United States Navy and hopes to attend Annapolis. Brown is a member of the the William F. Halsey Battalion which is a unit based around the structure of a Navy Seabee Battalion. The Sea Cadets offer a challenging and fun program for youths between the ages of 11 and 18. The Sea Cadets strive to mirror Navy core values as well as instill a sense of duty, patriotism and honor amongst it’s ranks. Brown said, “We learn marching drills, learn military leadership skills and go on field trips to military museums. I like learning from the Sea Cadets and participating in the Honor-Call program because I hope it will help me in my military career that I hope to have one day.”
Trussell said, “I am honored to play TAPS for the people that gave us so much. They fought for our country and for us. I am happy to give back to those who gave us so much.”
Milford ISD principal, Marilee Byrne explained, “We have a tradition of excellence here at Milford ISD and we are glad to add the Honor-Call to our school program. I am very proud of the students that stepped up and took the opportunity that was offered to them. I am also very lucky to have a band director like Mike Trussell who gives his all to our students.”
For a list of schools participating in Honor-Call go to honor-call.org and click on “school list” and you will see Milford ISD listed among all of the schools. There are thirty schools in all.