PAT Tillman walked away from the NFL and millions of dollars to join the Army soon after the September 11, 2001, terror attacks.
Tillman was killed in the line of duty on April 22, 2004, at the young age of 27.
Who was Pat Tillman and what was his cause of death?
Army Ranger Pat Tillman was killed by friendly fire while serving in Afghanistan.
ESPN recounted Tillman's tragic death in 2014 as the 10th anniversary approached.
"The events leading up to one of the most infamous friendly-fire deaths in US military history were rife for second-guessing from the start," the ESPN story read.
"After an Army Humvee broke down in the mountains, Tillman's platoon was ordered divided by superiors so that the Humvee could be removed; a local truck driver was hired as the hauler.
"But the two groups struggled to communicate with each other as they traversed the steep terrain. And the second group soon became caught in a deafening ambush, receiving fire as it maneuvered down a narrow, rocky canyon trail."
A squad leader would misidentify an allied Afghan soldier positioned next to Tillman as the enemy, according to ESPN.
Soldiers would fire upon what Army Ranger Steven Elliott called "shadowy images," ESPN reported.
Tillman was a safety with the NFL's Arizona Cardinals for four seasons before joining the Army.
He enlisted eight months after 3,000 people were killed in the September 11 terror attacks.
Tillman, a California native, turned down a contract offer of $3.6 million when he joined the military.
Why did Donald Trump tweet about Tillman?
In 2017 President Donald Trump retweeted an account referencing Pat Tillman and using the hashtag #StandForOurAnthem.
Trump ripped NFL players for kneeling during The Star-Spangled Banner to protest police treatment of blacks and other social injustices.
Marie Tillman, Pat's widow, responded by saying her husband’s service “should never be politicized in a way that divides us.”
“As a football player and soldier, Pat inspired countless Americans to unify,” Marie Tillman said at the time.
“It is my hope that his memory should always remind people that we must come together."
Marie would marry again and now has five children.
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