“The doctors who examined Corporal Tillman urged a criminal investigation into his death be opened at that time, and were refused.”

An open letter to the NFL and NFL Players Association (via):

August 13, 2007

Roger Goodell
National Football League
280 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10017

Gene Upshaw
Executive Director
NFL Players Association
1133 20th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20036

Dear Commissioner Goodell and Mr. Upshaw,

On behalf of the veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, and those troops still in theater, we are writing to ask that the National Football League and NFL Players Association publicly or privately urge President Bush to reconsider his decision to invoke claims of executive privilege in refusing to share vital documents regarding the death of Corporal Pat Tillman with the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

As you know, earlier this month the Associated Press obtained the medical examiner’s finding at the time of his death in Afghanistan, that Corporal Tillman’s fatal wounds seemed to indicate shots fired from ten yards away, or less. The doctors who examined Corporal Tillman urged a criminal investigation into his death be opened at that time, and were refused. Since that time, the Department of Defense has put forth two explanations for the death of Corporal Tillman, the first of which was proven false, and a second which now seems to have been proven to be a lie, as well. In both cases, the White House has actively pushed these false findings to the public.

The administration has shared a number of documents with the committee, but has withheld a number of requested communications under the specious argument that sharing the documents would violate confidentiality among the President and his staff. For instance, the Committee has requested a number of communications between senior administration officials and the Pentagon, which may offer important details into the death of Corporal Tillman, and if there was an attempt to cover them up, by some in the Executive Branch.

We know that the National Football League and Players Association are not in the business of partisan politics, nor should they be. However, in this case, there are three compelling reasons for the league and players association to get involved:

First, the House committee requests were signed by both the Democratic Chairman and Republican Ranking Member, so this is not a partisan witch-hunt, but merely a quest to get to the truth about the death of Pat Tillman. No reasonable person would charge that the league is favoring one party over another.

Secondly, and unfortunately, the league, in its touching and appropriate tributes to Pat Tillman, unwittingly promoted the original and false finding that Corporal Tillman was killed by enemy fire in the war on terror. We do not fault the league for this – after all, there was no reason for it to distrust the official findings supplied by the Administration. However, since the league and its intense media exposure was used as a de facto public relations machine for the White House, in promoting the false account of Pat Tillman’s death, it is only responsible that the league join the bi-partisan calls demanding the complete truth.

Finally, the league and the players association both owe the Tillman family their full support in the family’s pursuit of the truth. Mary Tillman, Pat’s mother, has been quite vocal about her desire to see all materials released regarding her son’s death, and the family has gone as far as expending its own money on private investigations. At a time when former players increasingly say that the league and players association has not taken care of them, there would be no better way to send a signal that the league supports its own than by demanding the complete truth be told regarding a former player’s death.

Our organization is based in New York with representatives in Washington, and we would be happy to meet with you or your representatives at any time to further discuss this matter. Thank you for your time and attention.


Jon Soltz
Iraq War Veteran
New York NY
Chairman, VoteVets.org

Peter Granato
Iraq War Veteran
Washington DC

Shelly Burgoyne
Iraq War Veteran
Tucson AZ

Michael Breen
Afghanistan War Veteran
Seattle WA

Jeremy Broussard
Iraq War Veteran
Bowie MD

Brandon Friedman
Iraq and Afghanistan War Veteran
Dallas TX

John Bruhns
Iraq War Veteran
Philadelphia PA

Elliot Anderson
Afghanistan War Veteran
Las Vegas NV

Jason Torpy
Iraq War Veteran
Columbus OH

Joseph Kramer
Iraq War Veteran
Pittsburgh PA

Sam Shultz
Iraq and Afghanistan War Veteran
New Salisbury IN

Philip Gilfus
Iraq War Veteran
Fayetteville NC

Katherine Scheirman
Iraq War Era Veteran
Oklahoma City OK

Andrew Horne
Iraq War Veteran
Louisville KY

William Edwards
Iraq War Veteran
Arlington VA

Thomas Cleere
Iraq War Veteran
Smithtown NY

Jason Wold
Iraq War Veteran
Dallas TX

Miranda Norman
Iraq War Veteran
Norman OK

Samantha Clay
Iraq War Veteran
Red Oak TX

Kevin Rae
Iraq War Veteran
McDonaugh GA


One Response to ““The doctors who examined Corporal Tillman urged a criminal investigation into his death be opened at that time, and were refused.””

  1. Kiptext.Com » “The doctors who examined Corporal Tillman urged a criminal … Says:

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