- Associated Press - Saturday, February 11, 2017

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) - A University of Northern Iowa student is using her trumpet to give back to veterans, playing “Taps” at many local military funerals.

University marching band member JD Waybill of Central City has been performing at most military funerals with the Cedar Falls AMVETs Post 49 since 2015, The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier (https://bit.ly/2krK2Od ) reported.

“I enjoy doing this,” she said. “It’s something I’m good at and I can do.”

Waybill reached out to the Cedar Falls AMVETs because she had performed at military funerals in Central City since eighth grade and wanted to continue doing so in college. Waybill estimates she’s performed at more than 100 funerals in Central City and Cedar Falls combined.

Cedar Falls AMVETS Post 39 commander Marv Mattfield said Waybill’s services are in high demand given the rate at which aging World War II and Korean War veterans are passing away.

Waybill said she has found that her nerves and emotions can distract her during the funerals, so she tries to focus on the music, rather than the occasion, to do a good job. She said she gets satisfaction out of performing at the funerals even though she doesn’t have a military background.

“For me, it’s always been, I will never serve. I don’t have it in me to serve,” she said. “So I might as well give back in a way I can to those who have protected me and my family for so many years. If I can give this little bit of solace to the families and fallen veterans, I might as well do so. It doesn’t cost me anything.”


Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, https://www.wcfcourier.com

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