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Reveille VII celebrates birthday

A&M’s first lady turns 1 year old

Published: Wednesday, October 10, 2001

Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 23:07

The Corps of Cadets' highest-ranking member turned one year old Tuesday.

Company E-2 held a birthday party for Reveille VII Tuesday night. Bred and donated by Dr. Cindi Dossart, her husband Jim Efron and breeder Nancy MacDonald, Reveille was born Oct. 9, 2000. She came to campus Feb. 16, 2001, and officially took over duties from Reveille VI at the Corp of Cadets Final Review on May 12.

Mascot corporal Javier Aguirre, a sophomore political science major, said Reveille VII is still just a pup. Aggies may have seen -- and heard -- their mascot barking during yell practice and football games, but Aguirre said crowds and excitement are still something new to Reveille.

"She still gets very lost in big crowds," Aguirre said. "She's a great puppy, but she's two different dogs at once. The soft side of her is adorable, but you take her from a quiet environment in the dorm to the extreme with the band, yell leaders and 80,000 fans, and she gets nervous."

Reveille VI, inducted at the Louisville game in 1993 at an age younger than Reveille VII, went through a similar puppy stage, Aguirre said.

Reveille I was brought to A&M in January of 1931 after a group of students hit a small black and white dog on their way back to campus from Navasota. They brought the dog back to school to care for her.

The next morning, she barked along with the bugler playing "Reveille," and the name stuck.

Reveille I was named the official school mascot when she led the band onto the field at half-time the next football season. She died on Jan. 18, 1944, was given a formal military burial in Kyle Field, and was later reburied at the north entrance to the field, facing the scoreboard.

Reveille VII represents A&M, Aguirre said. She attends all athletic events, Yell Practices and student organization meetings, visiting area schools and posing for photos with Aggies. Aguirre and Reveille logged more than 12,000 miles this summer traveling to Aggie Mom clubs and A&M clubs across Texas. Aguirre calls himself her "main secretary."

"She loves to run up to other people and greet them," Aguirre said.

Reveille and her entourage -- the three Corps members, including Aguirre, who stand with her at football games -- fly on chartered planes to away games. Though she can be seen drinking bottled water at the football games, Aguirre says she eats regular dog food --not table scraps.

Aguirre says that if the mascot ever jumps into his bed, he follows tradition, relinquishes the bed to the highest ranking corps member, and spends the night on the floor.

"It's tradition, and if you stop following it, it just doesn't mean as much," Aguirre said.

Reveille goes everywhere the mascot corporal goes, to class, on dates and grocery shopping. But Aguirre says taking the one-year-old with him is a challenge; anything catches her attention, from students and children wanting to pet her to motorcycles and golf carts whizzing by.

"We're together all the time," he said. "It's that bond you get with a dog. Sooner or later, she's just not a dog anymore."

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