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Whisenhunt sees Pat Tillman jerseys while visiting troops

Super Bowl XLIII

of the Arizona Cardinals of the Pittsburgh Steelers during Super Bowl XLIII on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.

Al Bello

Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt, one of several coaches visiting U.S. troops in the Middle East, has provided a first-person account of his experiences to the team’s official website. One experience seems particularly appropriate, especially as we prepare to celebrate the anniversary of our nation’s birth -- and as we remember once again the sacrifices made by thousands of men and women to secure and preserve the freedoms we enjoy.

“I’ve had a couple of guys bring up Pat Tillman jerseys and want those signed and it’s cool,” Whisenhunt writes. “I’ve had one guy who told me he trained Pat Tillman when he came over here. That makes you think about how much Pat meant to so many people. That’s been special.”

Tillman quit football after 9/11 and joined the military. He was killed by friendly fire in April 2004.

Whisehunt also explains a “zero gravity” experience in a C-130, and riding in a helicopter as it avoided the Red Zone, which has an entirely different meaning in matters of war than it does in football.

Kudos once again to Whisenhunt, Texans coach Gary Kubiak, and the father-son Jim Moras for devoting their time, and taking a fairly significant risk, for those who currently serve.