Exiting early from a military concert is disrespectful and rude

The Army Field Band and Soldier's Chorus performed in the small town where I live. The high school gym doesn't have the best acoustics but the concert was excellent. Patriotic tunes and ragtime hits stole the show. The performers did their country proud. An encore of the Star Spangled Banner was performed that would have made John Phillips Sousa proud. However, I don't think that he would have been as proud of the audience.

I was saddened to see people leave during the encore. Exiting early from a military concert is disrespectful and rude. Except for the family with a crying child, there was no reason that all audience members couldn't have waited the few extra minutes that it took for the concert to end. It only took a few minutes to leave the high school parking lot after the concert.

Leaving early wasn't simply wrong, but those who left missed a real treat.
The men and women who performed, shook hands with concert goers in the hallway at the end of the concert. It was a true privilege to meet the men and women who serve. They stood there with instruments in hand and enthusiastically answered questions about the military, instruments that they played and the music itself.

The music was excellent, but meeting the performers was the highlight of the evening. It's a shame that some people chose to miss out. That's a high price to pay for being in a hurry.

Many thanks to our brave men and women who keep our country safe. You are our heroes! May you always stay safe.