|Tuesday, July 8
Former Cardinals safety selected for elite Ranger training
ESPN.com news services
Pat and Kevin Tillman have returned to the United States after serving in combat during Operation Iraqi Freedom and both have been selected by the Army to participate in a three-month-long elite Ranger training regimen, the Arizona Republic reported Tuesday.
"The boys have been back for a couple of weeks now, and now they are stationed in the Tacoma, Washington, area," their father, Patrick Tillman Sr., said to the Republic Monday. "They are both healthy and fine, and we, of course, we are very relieved and very happy."
Since joining the Army following the 2001 World Trade Center disaster, the Tillmans have refused all media interviews -- a policy they still enforce. They will, however, be recognized in absentia on ESPN's 2003 ESPY Awards on July 19, when they will receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. Their younger brother, Richard, will accept on their behalf, according to their father.
"To tell you the truth, the boys are not too pleased about the ESPY thing," said the elder Tillman. "But I am. I'm very happy about it. I'm proud."
The senior Tillman did not elaborate when asked if his two sons saw much combat overseas, but said to the Republic, "they are still pleased with the decision that they made."
Pat Tillman turned down a three-year, $3.6 million contract with the Arizona Cardinals to enlist in the Army in the wake of the terrorist attacks. Kevin gave up a minor league baseball career to join Pat.