Thousands Nationwide Answer 'Taps Across America' Call

Monday, May 25th 2020, 10:11 pm
By: Clayton Cummins

COVID-19 has changed many things about our day-to-day lives.

On Memorial Day, that was no exception as many parades and services all across the state and country were called because of the pandemic. That didn’t stop thousands from honoring fallen soldiers Monday from the front lawn or even the porch.

It’s all part of “Taps Across America.”

At 3 p.m. Monday, trumpeter David Hooten paid tribute to our country’s fallen soldiers by playing “taps” on his trumpet outside of the Oklahoma City Police Department.

“This year it has a special meaning because so many people cant go to the cemetery’s due to social distancing, some cemeteries are closed,” said Hooten.

Hooten wasn’t alone, not by far.

Xaiver Hayes, 17, played “taps” on his trumpet from Oak Park Cemetery in Chandler.

Bill Bartee played from his porch in Bethany.

Everyone answered the call from CBS News' Steve Hartman and retired Air Force bugler Jari Villanueva on Friday to play "taps" from a lawn or front porch at 3 p.m., of course, all while social distancing

“I got a call from Jari Villanueva, he said that the national news was doing a spot on him and could I help him get other trumpet players involved and I said sure,” said Hooten.

With family in the military, Hooten said with Monday’s chance for rain or even lightning, he wasn’t going to miss this. 

“We’ve conceded a lot of our rights for the social distancing but it is not equal to or anything like our soldiers have given,” said Hooten. “This is the least we can do to show our respects.”

It’s a Memorial Day unlike anything we’ve seen before.

Even in the midst of a pandemic, our country’s fallen can still be remembered.

“Freedom is never free and so this day is not just a day off, it is a day of remembrance,” said Hooten. “It is incredibly important that we show that we support our troops.”