Total Titans wishes all of you a happy and safe Memorial Day. Many people will celebrate the three-day weekend with picnics, backyard cookouts, days on the lake, and other festive activities.
In the midst of your holiday celebration, I urge you to remember Pat Tillman and others like him who gave true meaning to the reason why we recognize this special day.
Tillman and twenty-five other former NFL members are among the many thousands who have given their lives in service to our country. Pat Tillman walked away from a multimillion dollar contract with the Arizona Cardinals to enlist in the Army Rangers, one of the most unselfish acts I have witnessed in the sports world.
In an article I wrote last year, since lost in cyberspace due to a server problem, I opined that the words “hero” and “courage” were overused in sports. Since then, I’ve found a quote from Cardinals executive Michael Bidwell which probably phrases the concept better than I did:
“In sports we have a tendency to overuse terms like courage and bravery and heroes and then someone like Pat Tillman comes along and reminds us what those terms really mean.”
Tillman lost his life in Afghanistan in the war against terrorism.
Other former NFL members who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country are recognized in this article on the Pro Football Hall of Fame website.
Football fans of my generation will always remember Steelers RB Rocky Bleier, who was told by doctors he might never walk again after rifle and shrapnel wounds received in Vietnam. Rocky went on to win four Super Bowl rings and has been a spokesman on behalf of veterans ever since.
As you remember these true heroes and their sacrifices, please also enjoy a safe holiday with your family and friends.