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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The Battalion May 4, 2024

‘Softly call the Muster’

 
 

“Let comrade answer ‘here.'”
April 21 – friends and family “live over again their college days, the victories and defeats won and lost upon the drill field and in the classroom.”
Current and former Texas A&M students will gather Sunday in Reed Arena to honor the Aggies, who though they are not present in body, “will forever remain with us in Aggie Spirit.”
“If I could sum it up in one word what Aggie Muster means to me, it’s family,” said Student Body President-elect Reid Jospeh, who has served on the Aggie Muster committee for two years. He said the importance of Muster really hit home his freshman year, when his family honored Reid’s grandfather, Tom Joseph, Class of 1947. It brought closure to his life, Reid said.
“I realized not only was I surrounded by my family of Aggies … I was surrounded by the entire Aggie family,” he said. “That was so incredibly powerful – just knowing that is very comforting.”
During the Roll Call for the Absent, comrades will answer “here” to represent each of the 120 Aggies who have died since the last Muster roll call in 2012.
Bryce Buchmann, senior political science major whose father was Class of 1984, said some of his first words were attempts at “gig ’em.” But, despite the traditions his father spoon-fed him at an early age, Buchmann said he latched onto the tradition of saying “here” at Muster last year.
“Last year was my first year to go to Muster, but I’m not going to miss it ever again,” Buchmann said.
Muster is called world wide, with the largest Muster ceremony held on the Texas A&M University campus.
Tradition says, “If there is an A&M man in one-hundred miles of you, you are expected to get together, eat a little, and live over the days you spent at the A&M College of Texas.”
Muster will be held at more than 325 locations this year, including at least 40 abroad.
“[Muster] takes place in tents and foxholes, on cruise ships, at brew pubs and everywhere in between,” said coordinator of A&M Club Programs Scott Jarvis. “It’s the one time a year when Aggies take pause no matter where they are to reflect on what it means to be a part of the Aggie Family, swap Aggie stories with maybe a close friend, maybe someone they’ve never met before and honor those who have passed on.”
Mark Heath, Class of 1989, said he started going to Muster when he was a student and has kept the tradition after graduation. He said the most memorable muster he participated in took place in a military dining facility when he was working for an engineering company in Afghanistan.
Heath said each time he has attended a muster, different people and activities surrounded the roll call, such as a Texas A&M flag signing.
“It was great getting together with Ags,” Heath said. “It was great to meet new people and find out what they did. Most were in the military service, although some were civilians like me. We shared some stories and we had muster.”
Frank Pye, former Ross Volunteer and Class of 1984, said he will never forget the first time he called out “here” for a fellow Aggie. He said Muster has been a part of his life since he was a student and has carried with him through his time in service at Fort Sill, Okla., and hopes to pass down to his son, Adam, who will attend A&M beginning fall 2013.
“It was always a moving experience, especially the roll call of the absent Aggies,” Pye said. “This year, we are attending Muster with the Fort Bend Aggie Club. It will be Adam’s first experience so I am looking forward to it.”

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