CLARENCE, N.Y. (WIVB)–The parades are canceled and most picnics packed away, the normal Memorial Day traditions couldn’t happen this year due to the pandemic, but that didn’t stop people from honoring our service members.
Taps Across America brought veterans, musicians and students together throughout the US, playing the well known salute, typically played at the funerals for military members.
“It was relatively easy, it was a straight forward piece that actually was in the same key I play in so it was really simple I just looked at it memorized it and once I got the hang of it, it was really straight forward,” said trombone player Adam Melluso.
At 3 P.M in Clarence, Adam Melluso stepped onto his front lawn and began to play the 24-note song after just memorizing it hours earlier.
“One of my cohorts down In Pittsburgh at my college, she’s the section leader of my band and she had posted an email saying hey your section leader wants to know if you guys would be interested in playing taps across America,” Melluso said. “Being so passionate about our military men and women as I am, I thought you know what this is the first time I’m hearing about this so I really wanted to make a difference even if it’s my first time out.”
Melluso has been playing the trombone since elementary school. More than ten years later, he says he loves finding ways to use his musical gift while giving back.
“I always look for something when I’m playing trombone to try and draw an emotional connection to someone. This is obviously a significant holiday.We love our veterans and we do a lot for them and I just wanted to extend that and for me personally it was just very fulfilling.”
Taps Across America was able to bring thousands together across this country while also making sure we are keeping safe and following social distancing guidelines.
Marlee Tuskes is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.