Tillman memorial speakers include McCain, Jake Plummer
The Arizona Republic
May. 3, 2004 11:55 AM
SAN JOSE - Sen. John McCain, California First Lady Maria Shriver and Denver Broncos quarterback Jake Plummer are among the dignitaries expected to eulogize Pat Tillman today at a public memorial service for the fallen Army Ranger.
Tillman, a former Cardinals defensive standout killed in combat in Afghanistan about two weeks ago, was a native of San Jose. His family and his wife, Marie, live here.
Greg Gladysiewski, a Cardinals spokesman, said the team, which helped arrange the memorial, expected more than 1,000 to attend the public service at San Jose Municipal Rose Garden, a floral park in the heart of the city.
Security was tight for the service, which is expected to attract an array of sports stars as well as military officials and friends of Tillman's family. Among those expected to attend are members of the Bidwill family, owners of the Cardinals; Cardinals coach Dennis Green; singer Darius Rucker of the band Hootie and Blowfish, who was scheduled to sing during the memorial; and ESPN talk show host Jim Rome, who is to act as master of ceremonies at the event.
Though services were not to begin until 3 p.m., NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, NFL Players Association executive director Gene Upshaw and others are expected to meet with the media beforehand to discuss Tillman's death.
Tillman, 27, died in an ambush and firefight on April 22 near the village of Sperah in southeast Afghanistan. Two other members of the 75th Ranger Regiment to which he belonged were wounded.
Tillman's family has declined to discuss the former athlete's death, and media were instructed before the memorial Monday not to photograph or talk to the family.
Those expected to eulogize Tillman include his father, Patrick Tillman Sr., and his brother, Rich Tillman; brothers-in-law Paul Ugenti and Alex Garwood; Chief Petty Officer Stephen White and Spc. Russell Baer, both of whom were stationed with Tillman in Iraq; longtime friends Chad Schwartz, Jeff Hechtle, Jeff Bernal, Benjamin Hill, Terry Hardtke and Zach Walz; Lyle Setencich, who was Tillman's position coach at Arizona State University; former Cardinals head coach Dave McGinnis; and former Cardinals defensive coordinator Larry Marmie, who was Tillman's coach with the Cardinals.
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