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Taps and other family business

By By Buddy Bynum / The Meridian Star
June 2, 2002
The response to my Memorial Day story on my uncle, James McLaurin Harrison, ("The uncle I never knew") who was killed aboard the USS Indianapolis on July 30, 1945, has been extraordinary. The worst disaster in U.S. naval history obviously touched many families and I appreciate the many readers who have shared their comments and thoughts.
I mentioned that my cousin, Paul McLaurin Harrison, was named after Uncle Mac, as was I. Another of my cousins, Gwen Kay McMahan Walton, reminded me that her second son, Nickolas McLaurin Walton, now 23 years old, was also named after our Uncle Mac. Nick is a military policeman with the 186th Air Guard and, while he has not yet served overseas, has been on active duty since September 2001.
I know he's as proud of his family ties as am I.
The origin of Taps'
Over the last week, we've printed two separate stories on the origin of the bugle call "Taps," one account by Meridian resident Bobby Rushing, a valued and all-too-infrequent contributor to these pages, and the other in an Ann Landers column.
A reader, Mel Scarborough, BG (MS), Ret., Mississippi Air National Guard, wrote that he had the opportunity to spend a day at Berkeley Plantation, Va., three years ago, where he noted that the composing of "Taps" and a National Park Service plaque are big parts of the visit.
He offered this official account, as provided by the Arlington National Cemetery "Taps" Project.