By: Cadet Christopher Bulus
The New Mexico Military Institute is in Roswell, New Mexico. The school was established by Colonel Robert S. Goss in 1899 and has been in existence since then. “I have learned that people will forget what you said, what you did, but cannot forget how you made them feel.” This quote by Maya Angelou brings back the memory of my childhood days back in Nigeria before flying thousands of miles to get to the Institute for my education and tennis career. The Institute derives its legacy from the duty, honor, and achievement of the alumni and current cadets who have been successfully upholding the traditions at their Alma Mater. My favorite tradition at the Institute is the Silver Taps. The importance of this tradition is that it not only remembers the alumni of the Institute, but it also brings them back to the place where they have learned what it takes to be a leader.
The 2019 Silver Taps was held in the Hagerman barracks on the 24th day of October starting at 1900. Last year was my first time witnessing and participating in the Silver Taps. The event brought back my high school memories and made me realize how I would have felt if I was the exact person seeing my classmates on that day. The Silver Taps event starts the day before homecoming dance because happiness supersedes sorrow. Everyone pays their last respect to the deceased alumni and close friends. As a son, a cadet, and human with emotions, I understand how it feels to pay respect to deceased loved ones and family members because I have witnessed one in my family. The Silver Taps play a huge role in preserving the legacy of the Institute because there is nothing greater than love.
Friends at the Institute are the future Alumni, and the Silver Taps ceremony will continue to exist if the Institute continues to exist. My freshman tennis coach, Daniel Dominquez, at the Institute was a former cadet who came back to serve the school and help the students grow successfully. Finally, after 125 years and still counting, the Alma Mater continues to exist.