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Troops stage Twilight Tattoo Friday night
Old tradition for Army birthday
SFC Jody Manford practices
SFC Jody Manford practices a song for Friday's ceremony. - photo by Photo by Frenchi Jones
For the first time in the 3rd Infantry Division’s history, Fort Stewart soldiers will commemorate the Army’s 234th birthday with one of the Army’s oldest traditions to Hinesville.
At 7 tonight on Cottrell Field the Marne Division will present the 3rd ID’s rendition of the historic “Twilight Tattoo.”
The tradition began more than 300 years ago as British troops were summoned from the warmth and hospitality of local pubs by a bugle and drum call to return to the barracks. The familiar tune told tavern owners “doe den tap toe,” or “time to turn off the taps.” The troops knew the call to mean “taps off,” and minutes later they were supposed to be back in their tents.
Over the years the tradition has turned into a soldier’s show, displaying the precision, discipline and strength of the U.S. Army.    According to Maj. Gen. Tony Cucolo, Friday’s Twilight Tattoo will serve as a tribute to the 3rd ID’s service to the nation and the community.
“It’s a visible statement of commitment,” Cucolo said. “And I hope it gives the public confidence that we’ve got a great Army and a great country.”
More than 100 soldiers from the 3rd ID band and the 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team will participate in the event. The performance will pay tribute to every war-era the 3rd ID has participated in.
There will also be a helicopter insertion, a salute battery and several musical showcases, including the 3rd ID’s rock band, Charlie Rock.
Cpl. Tyler Wiggins is scheduled to play the role of a Korean War veteran at Friday’s ceremony.
He said he is excited about the opportunity to celebrate the Army’s birthday by paying tribute to those who served before him.
“It’s not only a matter of pride, but it’s a matter of honor to the country and we would not be doing it justice if we did not pay [the Army] and the [veterans] their due respect,” he said.
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