Veterans & Their Families Find Harmony In Opportunity To Make Music Together


Tuesday, May 11th 2021, 5:35 pm
By: Sawyer Buccy


TULSA, Oklahoma -

A group of nonprofits is giving Green Country veterans, their families and Gold Star families the opportunity to learn to play guitar.

Music is a language of its own. The notes can reach through barriers that might normally keep us all apart and have us all humming the same tune.

"When you play guitar, you are always going to have a buddy, man," said bART guitar instructor Michael McClure. 

The people gathered in a room at bART Center for Music are part of the Harmony for Heroes Collective.

"Marine Corps. 20 years, seven months," said student and veteran, Luisa Wall. 

"It was an opportunity to spend time with my grandson, which is my son's son. Our son was killed, this will be 10 years this year. It was 2011. We are raising his son - he is awesome. He is 15, and he is into music," said student Garth Peterson. 

This program is funded by the Oklahoma Art Council and partners with veteran organizations all over Green Country.

"We believe everyone regardless of race, age, gender or ability to pay should have the opportunity to be creative through music," said bART Executive Director Ally Taylor. 

"It has been a source of therapy and encouragement for me. Music can be very therapeutic," said student and Army Veteran Mark Foor. 

The point of the space is to make sure veterans and their families have access to weekly guitar lessons. It also hopefully offers the skills to make music a lifelong tool they can use to express themselves, heal or connect.

"Even my grandson, he is into a little bit different music than I am into, but we can connect through this,” Peterson said. “There has been a couple times driving back where we just get to talk about his dad and that does bring healing because of that time together.”  

This is more than music, more than an hour-long class on a Tuesday morning or a Thursday evening.

"It is pure joy. I believe that we are changing so many lives in so many ways and to have that capacity is a gift," said Taylor. 

To learn more about Harmony for Heroes, visit the website here.