Vet Wants 'Taps' to Play Nightly—Across Entire US

Valparaiso, Ind., already on board, but looks like tough sell elsewhere
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2013 11:10 AM CDT
Loyd Welte, retired Army veteran, plays "Taps" with his bugle at a commemoration ceremony for Veteran's Day on Nov. 11, 2007 in Kirksville, Mo.   (AP Photo/Al Maglio)

(Newser) – It's an ambitious plan, to say the least: An Indiana veteran wants "Taps" to be played every single night at dusk—across the entire US, reports the Indianapolis Star. Former Marine Bill Wellman has already convinced Valparaiso, Ind., to pipe the 24 notes over the 50 speakers it has mounted throughout downtown; it'll start doing so this week. And the nearby towns of Portage and Crown Point are considering it, too.

Wellman isn't just motivated by patriotism, though. A subsidiary of the company the lifelong entrepreneur works for offers a digital timing box that typically handles tasks like turning on streetlights automatically; in this new application he dreamed up, "you just set the ZIP code and the local time and add an MP3 file and let it rip," explains the company's VP of technology. But it might be a tough sell: Some people contend that playing "Taps" every day would lessen its power, while others say its somber mood could be a bit of a buzzkill. "We might want 'Taps' reserved for special occasions, like Memorial Day or Veterans Day, and not every night," said one Indianapolis tourism official.

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