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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The Battalion May 4, 2024

Military scholars salute fallen soldiers

 
 

Shadowed by the trees and buildings around Rudder Fountain Plaza, Pat Tillman Military Scholars stood at a podium for three hours, naming off fallen war heroes who served and died in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
Pat Tillman was a professional football player for the Arizona Cardinals prior to the 9/11 attacks against the U.S. The attack signaled the end of his NFL career, and he decided to serve in the Army. Tillman died while in service after touring Iraq and Afghanistan.
According to the foundations website, www.pattillmanfoundation.org, Tillmans friends and family created the foundation in 2004 to build a community of scholars dedicated to improving their own lives, the lives of their families, and their country.
Texas A&M currently educates five of the 230 scholarship recipients who have gone through the Tillman Military Scholars program.
During the ceremony, over 2,000 names were listed off during the national roll call of those who lost their lives in Operation Enduring Freedom.
I think last year they read over 6,000 names of soldiers who were killed and it took about eight to nine hours, said Spc. Chris Cartellone, an archaeology graduate student.
Campuses across the nation partake in the salute to fallen soldiers, but each campus has the option to customize their roll call, Cartellone said.
Chief Warrant Officer Eric Metcalf, who is a first year Tillman Scholar obtaining his masters degree in wildlife sciences, said that there were 27 Aggies who were killed since 9/11; all of whom were represented at the plaza with their names and pictures displayed on posters.
Metcalf served in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2005 and in Iraq from 2009 to 2011. He is still on active duty.
At 1:00 p.m., there was a moment of silence, which was preceded by a 21-gun salute. The moment of silence is unique because it happens at the exact same time all across the nation, no matter the time zone.
Before the minute of silence, Metcalf gave a short address to bystanders.
Today it is imperative that we remember the sacrifice of those through the years, Metcalf said. Let us never forget all veterans, living and dead.

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