Pat Tillman and the word patriot are synonymous. The talented football player had a thriving career with the Arizona Cardinals. Following the 9/11 attacks, the United States invaded Afghanistan. Tillman then made the decision to fight for his country. He turned down a three-year, $3.6 million contract with the Cardinals to enlist with the army.
The public was shocked that someone would give up the life of being a professional athlete to fight for a cause, but Tillman was no ordinary person.
Tragically he was killed while in Afghanistan, but his legacy lives on.
Tillman is a true hero. There is no better way to pay tribute to what happened on that tragic day in September 2001 than to honor the late Pat Tillman.
Quarterback Taylor Kelly #10 of the Arizona State Sun Devils walks out onto the field past a Pat Tillman photograph before the college football game against the Sacramento State Hornets at Sun Devil Stadium on September 5, 2013 in Tempe, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Safety Pat Tillman #40 of the Arizona Cardinals looks on during a game against the Oakland Raiders at the Sun Devil Stadium October 4 1998 in Tempe, Arizona. Tillman, a U.S. Army Ranger and former Arizona Cardinals strong safety was reportly killed in Afganstan while serving as an Army Ranger. Tillman, 27, enlisted in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, choosing to walk away from a 3-year, $3.6 million contract extension with the Cardinals. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images)
A young boy stops to view a poster of Pat Tillman, the former NFL player who joined the Army Rangers and was killed in action in the Middle East. (Photo by Steve Grayson/Getty Images)
26 Oct 1996: Linebacker Pat Tillman of the Arizona State Sun Devils looks on during a game against the Stanford Cardinal at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California. Arizona State won the game, 41-9.
Linebacker Pat Tillman of the Arizona State Sun Devils looks on during a game against the Stanford Cardinal at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California. Arizona State won the game, 41-9.
Arizona Cardinals defensive back Pat Tillman smiles during the pregame. (Photo by Gene Lower/Getty Images)
Wide receiver Reggie Swinton #80 of the Dallas Cowboys is tackled by Pat Tillman #40 of the Arizona Cardinals at Sun Devil Stadium in Phoenix, Arizona. The Cardinals defeated the Cowboys 17-10. DIGITAL IMAGE Mandatory Credit: Jeff Gross/Getty Images
Pat Tillman #40 of the Arizona Cardinals during the game against the Washington Redskins Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona. The Redskins won 20-10. DIGITAL IMAGE . Mandatory Credit : Donald Miralle/Allsport
Pat Tillman Sr. the father of the late Pat Tillman stands behind his sons framed jersey in a half time ceremony during a game between the New England Patriots and the Arizona Cardinals at Sun Devil Stadium on September 19, 2004 in Tempe, Arizona. The Patriots won 23-12. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Pat Tillman #42 of the Arizona State University Sun Devils runs after his opponent to make the tackle at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona. (Photo by Arizona State/ Collegiate Images/Getty Images)
Arizona State players come up the Pat Tillman memorial tunnel to enter the field before the Arizona State 38 to 3 win over Stanford at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona on October21 , 2006. (Photo by Mike Moore/WireImage)
Pat Tillman is enshrined in the Cardinals ring of honor at half time during Cardinals Cowboys game at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, AZ on November 12, 2006 (Photo by Mike Moore/Getty Images)
Pat Tillman #40 of the Phoenix Cardinals looks on during a NFL football game against the Washington Redskins on January 6, 2002 at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
Pat Tillman #40 of the Arizona Cardinals lines up against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on December 3, 2000 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Bengals defeated the Cardinals 24-13. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Fans adorn the Pat Tillman statue with American flags in honor of the 10 year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks following the NFL season opening game between the Carolina Panthers and the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 11, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
A Chicago Bears fan holds up a Pat Tillman jersey during a game against the Seattle Seahawks on December 2, 2012 at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois.The Seattle Seahawks defeated the Chicago Bears 23-17 in overtime. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)