Announcing the “Taps List”

The Taps list is a collaborative effort between AOG and WP-Org. The intent is to give list members timely notification of a graduate’s death so that members can attend the funeral or send condolences in a timely fashion. We ask that any graduate forward all notifications of the death of a graduate to: The list will receive information from AOG, WP-Org, Class Leaders, etc. but the emphasis of the list is to get information out quickly, therefore we will accept notifications from all sources.

Last week we got into a discussion on the Forum about how the graduates of West Point are notified of a graduate’s death. Currently, there are several sources of information.

  • The first is AOG through the Assembly. Notices of graduates’ deaths are published with each issue of the Assembly which means that one might learn of the death of a friend too late to attend the funeral or send condolences in a timely manner.
  • The second is through the graduate’s class leaders list. AOG sends a message to the class leaders who then notify members of the deceased’s class. This is done in a timely manner, usually in time to attend funerals or send condolences. However, this only notifies graduates in the deceased’s class, not others who might have known the deceased and would like to have been notified of their death.
  • A third, lesser notification system is when WP-ORG sends an announcement to WP-ORG members of a graduate who is KIA. But this only applies to KIA and is only sent to WP-ORG members.

This new list was established to fill the void. I personally have learned too late that a friend in a class ahead of me passed away two years after it happened. This should not happen in today’s communication age.

The Taps List will be an all inclusive death notification system. All who subscribe to the list will receive notification of a death as soon as AOG or the Taps List moderators learn of it. This will include all deaths, regardless of class or cause.

This list will be run in a ‘listen-only’ mode. The list owners will push the death notifications to the list membership. The list membership will not be able to post to the general list. While one member might wish to say wonderful things about the deceased, there are other Forums to do this (WP-ORG eulogy site, class lists, WP-Forum, etc.).

We will post only initial death notification and follow up on funeral arrangements once known. Included will be where to go for further information (many times it will be simply the POC at AOG). AOG has agreed to feed this list all death notifications. We are also in the process of asking all WP-ORG moderators and Class Leaders to notify the Taps List owners upon the death of a graduate. WP-ORG will reciprocate with AOG by notifying AOG of any death notification the Taps List receives from sources other than AOG.

Currently, we project that the list volume will be approximately two messages per day. This may change as the system matures.

If you wish to subscribe please go to or send an email directly to and include your full name, class, Cullum #, and cadet company.

I wish to thank Demps, Di, Megan, Bill MacLean, Warren Hearnes & John Grieman for their assistance in setting up and then working out some bugs with the list. I would also like to thank Paul Varner ’89 and Fred Holmes ’56 for stepping up to the plate and being my co-moderators.

Steven S. Klement

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