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CHICAGO, IL - Soldier Statue with American Flag at Soldier Field. Photo Credit: SB Nation

CHICAGO, IL – Soldier Statue with American Flag at Soldier Field. Photo Credit: SB Nation

When athletes take the field they compete freely and they play to win. To the victor goes the spoils, is usually the order of the day.They fight hard, battle despite hardship, and solider on to the finish line. But despite all the theoretical and personal meaning attached to each athlete’s relationship to “the game,” their on-field battles are still part of a larger sporting event. Today, Memorial Day in the United Staes, we remember those who lost their lives fighting on the battle field to protect the values held by this country. Here, I salute our athletic heroes who also became war heroes and ultimately gave the ultimate sacrifice. And for all of the athletes who have been or are currently soldiers, may you live to play another day.

Navy football players marching with the American flag before an Army/Navy game. Photo Credit: AP

Navy football players marching with the American flag before an Army/Navy game. Photo Credit: AP

Articles honoring athletes who gave their lives or served in American wars:

“Athletes Who Served in the Military,” NBC Sports

“Athletes Who Died Fighting for Our Country,” Sporting News

“On Memorial Day Remembering the Athletes Who Died Fighting For Our Country, Forbes Magazine

“Unfilled Potential: Remembering Athletes Who Died in Military Action,” Bleacher Report

“Two Who Did Not Return,” NY Times

“Olympians Who Were Killed or Missing in Action or Died as a Result of War,” SR/Olympic Sports

“When Professional Athletes Went to War,” Veterans Advantage