I promised you an interesting story today about Pat Tillman who was a football player and US soldier, and I’m going to deliver on my promise. For those of you who don’t know the story, Tillman was a linebacker for Arizona State University who went on to play for the Arizona Cardinals for four years. Once he finished the remaining season after the attacks of September 11, 2001 he and his brother enlisted in the US Army. Mind you, he turned down a $3.6 million dollar contract with the Cardinals to enlist. This was not the kind of guy you find everyday. The mystery, lies, and uncertainly that still surround his untimely death have left his family searching for the truth. This blog isn’t going to solve that mystery but hopefully it will enlighten you on a the life of a great athlete, soldier, and person.
The Pat Tillman Foundation knows the great rewards that come from investing in veterans and their families. PTF also knows that the best way to invest in servicemen is through education. Pat Tillman was also an academic, graduating from ASU in three and half years with a 3.8 GPA and a degree in marketing. Since they began in back in 2004 the PTF has provided more than $2.2 million in support for pas and present service men and women, and their spouses. These scholarships help them cover tuition, fees, books, and even housing and child care. Pat’s Run is also held every year on ASU’s campus to honor Pat’s memory and raise funds for the foundation. The 4.2 mile race ends on the 42 yard line of ASU’s stadium which is symbolic of the number 42 Pat wore while he was a Sun Devil, and has since been retired in his honor. His morals and beliefs ran deep, and no matter what his religious beliefs or stance on war may have been, he showed our nation what commitment really means. The Army Emergency Relief is making sure that they are taking care of their own. Founded by the Secretary of War in 1942, AER has supported more than 3 million soldiers and their families overcome financial emergencies. Being in the Army means a lot of moving around, but the AER has made sure that they are exactly where soldiers have needed to be over the past 67 years. Most of their effort is focused on those are currently serving our country, but they continue to help widows/widowers over the years as well. Those two charities may be totally different, kind of like a profession athlete and a soldier, but it’s the common thread that unites them.
Pat Tillman Foundation Donation
Army Emergency Relief Donation
So here’s to you Pat Tillman! You may have been big and tough on the field, but your actions off the field show that you were really a bigsoftie on the inside. Even though your family may still be searching for answers about your final days, they can rest assured that your legacy is going strong. Thank you for embodying the values that our nation was founded on, and defending them till the very end.