The Day Taps Echoed Through Belgium's Hills | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

The Day Taps Echoed Through Belgium's Hills

Play associated audio

During World War II, Harrison Wright served with the Army in Europe. And as he recalls during a visit to StoryCorps with his grandson Sean Guess, he was sent on a very special assignment to mark the end of the war.

Wright was drafted in March 1943.

"I was an 18-year-old boy," he says. "I blew the bugle in our outfit," he adds, largely because he had played the trumpet in high school.

Wright was a member of the 227th Battalion, which followed other divisions and furnished them with soldiers after large and costly battles. During the war, he participated in funerals for men killed in action.

"If a young man is killed in action or dies defending his country, you blow taps over his grave," Wright tells Guess. "And it just — there's no way to describe it, the emotion that you feel, knowing that those notes is going out."

When World War II ended in 1945, Wright and his battalion were in Belgium.

"And I remember the war was over just a few days," he says, "and they asked me to blow taps for all who died in the war."

That was in Dolhain, Belgium, in the country's hilly eastern section near Germany.

"We climbed this high hill. It was like a mountaintop," says Wright. "And my battalion was at the bottom. I blew those taps. And when I did, the men said it floated out across all that valley, and said it was beautiful."

"They were all telling me how good it sounded, and what a tribute it was to our fallen comrades."

Audio produced for Morning Edition by Michael Garofalo.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

WAMU 88.5

Art Beat With Lauren Landau, April 20, 2015

You can hear music from Brazil this week at two Bossa Nova concerts.

NPR

This Robot Chef Has Mastered Crab Bisque

The system, a pair of robotic arms, learned to cook by mimicking the motions of a top chef. Even though it can't smell or taste, its maker says the robot should be able to make 2,000 meals by 2017.
WAMU 88.5

Morale Is Low Among Government Workers, But What Can Be Done?

Lawmakers are awaiting the results of a Government Accountability Office on low morale across federal agencies. But can Congress help fix a problem they played a large part in creating?

NPR

VW Camper Van Gets An Electric Makeover

Talk about a time warp! The iconic VW camper is getting a modern reboot. This time, it's electric.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.