Tigers Honor People Tribute for Heroes Nominees
On July 16, the best players in baseball will take the field as part of the 2013 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. That same day, America’s pastime will recognize some of America’s finest veterans and military heroes as part of the People Tribute For Heroes Program.
30 veterans and military service members representing each club will be included in the All-Star Week Festivities and have the opportunity to take the field during a special pre-game ceremony at the 2013 All-Star Game.
This past week, the Tigers recognized their three finalists in the People Tribute For Heroes contest in a special pre-game ceremony at Comerica Park. One will be selected to represent the Tigers at Citi Field for the All-Star Game.
A moving pre-game video honored Colonel Rodney Williams who was unable to attend. Colonel Williams received two law degrees including a Juris Doctorate and a Masters of Law in labor law, graduate certificates from MIT and UCLA, worked as a senior executive fellow at Harvard and had the distinction of being the first African-American Michigan Air National Colonel. Colonel Williams has worked extensively on programs and policies for military education and youth programs. He served as the National Youth Chair of the Tuskegee Airmen from 2009 until 2012, where he provided more than 15 leadership programs for urban youth throughout the nation. In retirement, Colonel Williams is the Air Force Academy Liaison Officer, encouraging young people to attend the Air Force Academy.
Then, the two present honorees Lee Armstrong of the United States Navy and Rodney Williams of the United States Air Force were welcomed onto the field and presented with commemorative Memorial Day jerseys and threw out the first pitch to People Tribute for Heroes celebrity judge, Justin Verlander.
Marine Scout Sniper Cory Gritter suffered severe shrapnel wounds to his leg, torso, hand and shoulder while deployed in Afghanistan, and since his discharge founded a cyber-security company to help transitioning veterans find careers. He has also volunteered with Toys for Tots and with his church, helping run activities for children with autism. Cory also recently completed the Marine Corps Marathon to raise money for Hire our Heroes.
Lee Armstrong has received two Navy Commendation Medals, two Navy Achievement medals, five Navy Good Conduct Medals, Navy Expedition Medal and various campaign and multi-service medals and ribbons. He is also the executive director of the Lucas County Veterans Service Commission, which provides emergency financial and federal claims assistance for veterans and president/chairman of Honor Flight Northwest Ohio (an all-volunteer organization) which has transported more than 1,450 veterans to Washington, D.C., to see the memorials at absolutely no charge to them.
Voting to choose which one of these three distinguished servicemen will represent the Detroit Tigers at the 2013 Major League Baseball All-Star Game on July 16 is now open. To learn more and vote for one of these military heroes visit: http://mlb.mlb.com/tribute/2013/index.jsp and click on the Detroit Tigers.