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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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Surrounded by spirit

The+Aggie+family+will+gather+in+Reed+Arena+at+7+p.m.+on+Thursday%2C+April+21+for+a+remembrance+ceremony%2C+and+celebration+of+the+50+year+reunion+for+the+Class+of+1972
Photo by Photo by Abbey Santoro

The Aggie family will gather in Reed Arena at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 21 for a remembrance ceremony, and celebration of the 50 year reunion for the Class of 1972

In one of Texas A&M’s oldest traditions, the Aggie family will gather to remember all the Aggies who have died in the past year during Aggie Muster, on Thursday, April 21 at 7 p.m. in Reed Arena, with doors opening at 5 p.m.
During Aggie Muster, a Roll Call for the Absent is read, and a candle is lit for each honoree. Following each name, attendees will say “Here” to symbolize that even those who are no longer physically present will always be a part of the A&M community.
The first Aggie Muster was hosted in 1883, by former students, and eventually turned into a campus event in 1924. In addition to the celebration in Reed Arena, former students around the world will host 258 local versions of the remembrance ceremony.
This event is run entirely by students on the Muster Committee, which works year-round to connect with families who have lost loved ones, as well as the returning Class of 1972 celebrating their 50th reunion. Political science junior Marcus Peña, programs executive on the committee, said this ceremony is what solidified his decision to attend A&M.
“It was [a] local Muster that started things for me; I went to my local Muster senior year of high school,” Peña said. “That was the craziest experience ever for me, because I already felt so connected to the school I was attending, and I was the first Aggie in my entire family. It was a really ethereal experience, and when I came to campus I knew the first thing I wanted to do was join the Muster Committee and give back.”
For biology senior Addison Blakemore, external relations coordinator, Muster is all about bringing people together and celebrating their part in this community.
“The most important part of Muster is the people, not only the people who put it on but the people it brings together, the former students, the current students and the future students, as well as their families,” Blakemore said. “Muster provides an event where everyone can come together and have that comradery.”
Biomedical engineering senior Rachel Greve, awareness executive for Muster Committee, said the event has something for everyone, and can provide great comfort.
“The most important parts of Muster to me are the comfort and compassion you feel going into it, so Muster is one thing where we welcome in a diverse group of individuals, both Aggies and non-Aggies. Muster is for everyone,” Greve said. “Muster meets you wherever you’re at, and everyone takes away something different from the experience. It’s something you may not realize you needed, but you walk away feeling the power of the Aggie family and the comfort and compassion, the outpouring of love on the night of Muster.”
Blakemore said seeing the way this campus unites for Muster helps make the massive scale of A&M much less intimidating.
“The most rewarding thing is seeing how big a network can come together,” Blakemore said. “What scared me coming to A&M was how big it was, how many people there were here and it was a scary change … There’s a lot of people connected to A&M as a student or faculty member or family of someone who goes to A&M. You are a part of that Aggie family, that Aggie Spirit and you get that sense of community.”
Despite the long-standing nature of Muster, Peña said it still manages to be a different experience each year, which is why it’s important for students to continue to attend.
“Not everyone is there to celebrate, but not everyone is there to grieve as well,” Peña said. “People are there for different reasons, and it’ll be different every year as well. I think it has people wanting to come back next year. That unity that comes out of it will provide emotions students haven’t felt as Aggies yet.”
During the day, the committee will also host a barbecue, free to all students, aiming to connect current students to the returning Class of 1972, at Kyle Field Plaza on Thursday, April 21 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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