* Golden Taps

March 21, 2007

Golden Taps ceremony to honor 8 Purdue students

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Four Purdue students whose deaths the university community has learned of over the past two weeks will be among eight students remembered on April 23 during Golden Taps, one of the Purdue's most solemn traditions.

The brief outdoor ceremony will begin at 9:15 p.m. on the steps of Hovde Hall. Wade S. Steffey, a freshman in the College of Technology from Bloomington, Ind.; Ronald Csukker, a graduate student in the Department of Agricultural Economics from Delphos, Ohio; Karen Chiang, a sophomore in the College of Liberal Arts from Northbrook, Ill.; and Morgan Imani Guice, a senior in the College of Liberal Arts from Detroit, Mich., will be honored along with four other students who died during the past academic year.

Families and friends of the students, along with the general public, are invited to attend.

"Golden Taps offers families, friends and fellow students a chance to remember, honor and reconnect with their loved ones," said L. Tony Hawkins, dean of students. "The Purdue community has been touched very deeply by the recent deaths of four students. Ceremonies like Golden Taps allow us not only to express our grief, but also to remember the bright lives of fellow students that ended much too soon. This ceremony reminds us of how our lives are all interconnected and gives us a chance to honor these students who will always be a part of Purdue University."

The additional students who will be remembered are Michael Chang, a senior in the College of Science from Fishers, Ind.; Esther Jane Kaminski, a senior in the College of Liberal Arts from New Carlisle, Ind.; Manish Kumar Saini, a graduate student in the School of Mechanical Engineering from Bombay, India.; and Tyler Martin Workman, a freshman in the College of Technology from Marshall, Ill.

Those planning to attend the ceremony should meet at 9 p.m. in the lobby of Schleman Hall.

Drummers and trumpeters from Purdue University Bands will set the tone for the event by proceeding from Elliott Hall of Music to the ceremony site, where memorial cards will list the names of the students being remembered. Bells in the Purdue Bell Tower will toll once for each student being honored, followed by a few moments of silence for personal reflection.

Following the playing of taps, the Purduettes will sing "The Purdue Hymn" and the Black Voices of Inspiration, of which Guice was a member, will perform.

After the ceremony, the Office of the Dean of Students and University Residences will hold a reception for the students' families in the Schleman Hall lobby. The families also will receive a personalized certificate as a remembrance of the event.

Golden Taps has been a tradition on campus since 1994 and was originally held in the courtyard at Cary Quadrangle.

Writer: Christy Jones, (765) 494-1089,

Sources: L. Tony Hawkins, (765) 494-1239,

Lou Ann Hamilton, Office of the Dean of Students counselor, (765) 494-1252,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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