memorializing the Long Gray Line Cullum files, Memorial articles & Taps

The West Point Association of Graduates (WPAOG) provides members of the Long Gray Line vital services for preservation of graduate records throughout the span of their lives as well as memorials of their legacies beyond.

  • Cullum Files
  • Memorial Articles
  • TAPS
  • Parchment Papers
  • Be Thou At Peace/Memorials/Testimonials Online

Cullum Files

The West Point Association of Graduates maintains a "Cullum File" or historical record, on every individual who ever attended USMA. Graduates are encouraged to provide information relating to their military career and other aspects of professional lives for inclusion in the file.
This file becomes more important for historical research every year. No one has access to your Cullum File without your or the Association Secretary’s prior approval.

What does WPAOG include in the Cullum Files?

  • Official USMA documents generated by USMA and provided to WPAOG
  • Official WPAOG documents such as a DGA citation
  • Documents of moderate length recieved from the graduate or from his/her heirs
  • News, articles, and other documents of moderate length received from third parties and are not readily available in other archives or in public electronic files such as those on the internet.

To whom will WPAOG release a Cullum File?

To the Graduate. If the graduate is living, he or she is the release authority. Routine use of Cullum Files by WPAOG or USMA Staff is permitted. If the graduate is deceased, WPAOG may permit access to Cullum Files for research purposes.

Suggested Documents to Submit for Your Cullum File

  • First Orders
  • Announcements
  • Wedding
  • Children
  • Degrees Obtained
  • Job Promotion, Hire, or Achievement
  • Change of Station
  • Change in Rank Professional Photos
  • Newspaper or Magazine Clippings
  • Self-Written Biography
  • Press Releases
  • Awards Received
  • Covers of Published Books
  • Resume
  • Vital Stats Sheet
  • Genealogical information about you and other family members who attended the Academy

"CULLUM FILE" or Vital Statistics sheet

Completed Vital Statistics Sheets should be submitted by graduates every five years. They are often the only source of information available on a graduate. Their completion and prompt return also insures accurate and current biographical data in the REGISTER OF GRADUATES.

There are many ways to submit your vital statistic sheet. Options include filling out the electronic form, sending via mail or by fax.

Open the Adobe PDF link below and fill in the text fields on the document, make sure the "highlight fields" button is selected. You can find it in the upper right hand corner or the Acrobat Reader page. After you are finished filling out all the fields click on the "submit by email" button found on the bottom and top of the form.


You may fill in the text fields and print the document and mail it back, OR print the document out, fill it out, and mail it back to the address below.

Fax: 845.446.1685, ATTN: Marilee Meyer, Memorials & Archives Manager

Your records are only as complete as the information you report


Please be sure to provide us a copy of your DD 214 (or other military document of service and discharge/release status) for your Cullum File, for use in the future. It is mandatory to verify eligibility for interment at West Point. The DD 214 is required to establish/confirm eligibility and service information.

Information on obtaining the DD214 if you do not have it available to you is located at: http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/#emergency. Simply download and fill out the second page of the SF-180 form from the pdf icon.

Memorial Articles

Be Thou At Peace

Upon the death of a graduate, the WPAOG is usually notified by family, friends, classmates, class leadership & sometimes online obituaries.

To report a death to WPAOG please contact us at: dnsreport@wpaog.org or 845.446.1617

Death Notification Process: We will collect and release basic information about the passing through our channels of notification: email distro lists to the class of the graduate and West Point community.

A memorial page is also created for each deceased graduate on the WPAOG Be Thou At Peace website


All graduate deaths are posted on the Be Thou At Peace website, which offers the reader the option to leave a personal testimonial about an individual. This page is also searchable by name & class year. Should a memorial article be written for that graduate, it will eventually be posted here upon completion. Later, provided there is an official next of kin with a valid address on file, WPAOG will send out an official condolence letter.

Memorial Articles- A tribute unique to the Long Gray Line

The WPAOG publishes Memorial Articles in memory of deceased graduates and former cadets. We believe every graduate should be honored with a memorial article. All articles are inspiring stories of achievement, service and personal trials. The careers and life work of these graduates is a testament to the West Point ideals of Duty, Honor County.

Memorial articles may be written by classmates, Next of Kin, a family member or even self written.

Articles are published in an annual issue of TAPS, online and are also available for purchase as a special archival copy parchment paper in a keepsake folder.

Submission Information

If you are planning on writing a Memorial Article for a loved one or classmate, please review our guidelines and download the revised Inventory Sheet below.

You may choose to submit a draft of your own Memorial Article or provide supplementary information to assist someone preparing an article for you in the future. Make sure that you advise next of kin or classmates that you have provided this information to WPAOG. For a list of the types of supplemental information that may be submitted, please refer to the Autobiographical Data Form below.

Most graduates prefer that the Howitzer photo be used on their Memorial Article, and the online template has been formatted proportionally for this. A custom photo may be submitted, however, it will be cropped to this proportion and must meet the following criteria:

Parchment Papers

Upon completion of the editorial process and approval of the Memorial Article, the designated next of kin will receive one complimentary copy of the deceased's memorial article on parchment-like paper (suitable for framing) and is enclosed with a linen finish black folder with the WPAOG crest stamped in gold foil.

Parchment papers are also available for purchase, each copy is $15 and may be ordered by contacting the Memorial Article Manager at memorials@wpaog.org or call 845.446.1545


TAPS is the official memorial publication for the Long Gray Line. WPAOG is the only publisher of a magazine such as TAPS, a compendium of memorial articles submitted throughout the calendar year preceding.

TAPS is published in late summer each year and is named for the bugle salute traditionally played at military burials. The mission of TAPS is to honor and record the personal life stories of its members.

TAPS may be ordered for $22 per copy online at: https://www.westpointaog.org/purchaseTAPS


WPAOG’s Memorials & Archives coordinator is available to support throughout the article-writing process and answers questions regarding how to research and organize a Memorial Article: for information call 845.446.1545 or email memorials@wpaog.org.

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