Police officer Jason Lamtman recently left the Sagamore Hills Police Department for a position at a local college as a police sergeant. As a result, part-time officer Glenn Lucore, who helped the service department as a substitute driver this past winter, was offered and accepted a full-time position. We wish them both well in their career paths. Police Chief David Hayes said one of the biggest problems with small departments is little room for advancement. Hayes feels all of Sagamore Hills’ full-time officers would be supervisors in larger departments. He will be asking Sgt. Lamtman if he will stay on in a part-time capacity. Congrats to all involved.
One of the responsibilities funded by Sagamore’s general fund is the Northfield Macedonia Cemetery located at the corner of Valley View Road and Olde Route 8. The total amount to operate the cemetery this year from all communities is $150,000. Sagamore’s assessment is $48,169. This is the same as last year and is based on property valuation in each Nordonia community. When I finished discussing the finances of the cemetery, my conversation with Trustees David DePasquale and Paul Schweikert turned to Memorial Day weekend. We discussed the closing ceremony “Taps.” Many are unaware that “Taps” originally began as a signal to extinguish lights.
The origin of “Taps,” or lights-out, dates back to the American Civil War. In July of 1862, U.S. General Daniel Butterfield had this call to go to sleep reworked. Gen. Butterfield thought it should be melodious so he reworked the 24-note tune.
It was played for the first time after the battle in 1862. Captain John Tidball did not want the traditional firing of a three-rifle volley over a dead soldier’s grave. He feared it would be perceived as a renewed signal to attack and ordered the bugler to play “Taps” instead. This tune quickly spread, not only with the Union Army but with the Confederates as well.
The origin of the word “Taps” comes from the Dutch word for “Tattoo.” It is the three drum taps that were beaten as a signal for “extinguish lights” when a bugle was not used. The earliest official reference to the mandatory use of “Taps” at a military funeral is found in Army drill regulations for 1891.
Today, “Taps” is the final call every evening on military bases and at military funerals. In 2012, Congress recognized “Taps” as the National Song of Remembrance.
There are no official lyrics to “Taps,” but a popular version is:
Go to Sleep. Put out the lights. Day is done, gone the sun, from the hills, from the lakes, from the sky. All is well, safely rest, God is nigh, go to sleep, peaceful sleep, may the soldier or sailor, God keep. On the land or the deep, safe in sleep.
Let’s remember all our service members present and past this Memorial Day.
God Bless America! ∞