Mom of War Hero Pat Tillman Furious ESPN Anointed Prince Harry Winner of Award Named After Her Son

AP Photo/Photography Plus via Williamson Stealth Media Solutions, FILE

After the horrors of 9/11, defensive back Pat Tillman gave up a successful and lucrative NFL career to enlist in the Army and defend his country. Tragically, he was killed in a friendly fire incident in Afghanistan in 2004. He posthumously received the Silver Star and Purple Heart medals.

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But his memory lives on in the form of the Pat Tillman Award, which was created in 2014 and is "given to a person with a strong connection to sports who has served others in a way that echoes the legacy of the former NFL player and U.S. Army Ranger, Pat Tillman," according to ESPN.

This year, ESPN decided to name… Prince Harry as the recipient. Tillman’s mother is extremely upset with the choice.

Mary Tillman said she was never consulted by the sports network to give the Duke of Sussex the Pat Tillman Award, which honors the late NFL safety-turned-Army Ranger who enlisted after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

“I am shocked as to why they would select such a controversial and divisive individual to receive the award,” Mary told the Daily Mail.

“There are recipients that are far more fitting,” she added. “There are individuals working in the veteran community that are doing tremendous things to assist veterans.”

Warning: Profanity

As Clay Travis noted in the above tweet, ESPN's own Pat McAfee blasted the move on his show and ridiculed the Duke of Sussex:

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'A lot of conversation about Pat Tillman's name. American hero... Now there’s an award named after him, as there should be in the sports world because that is somebody who is the definition of selfless,' McAfee said at first. 

'It's going to Prince Harry, who I don't even think is a prince anymore... He said don't call me that,' McAfee then quipped in a subtle dig at King Charles' estranged son, later adding: 'See, why does the ESPYS do this sh*t?'

After 'Boston Connor' - a member of the cast on the Pat McAfee Show - described Prince Harry's nomination for the award as 'probably the most embarrassing thing I've seen in my entire life,' McAfee questioned whether the ESPY Awards' committee even did its homework on its candidate search in the first place.

Former long-term NFL sideline reporter and now host of the @TafoyaPodcast was equally outraged:

Prince Harry served in the British military and was praised for helping launch the Invictus Games, a Paralympic-style competition for wounded or injured servicemen and veterans. In recent years, however, he and his insufferable wife, Meghan Markle, have created nothing but drama and divisiveness.

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Shame on ESPN, a network that over time became infected by wokeness and routinely ticks off its viewers by taking political stances instead of focusing on sports. Count me among those who don't think Pat Tillman's name should be associated in any way, shape, or form with Prince Harry's—especially not for an award named after the American hero.

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