RENTON, Wash.– The Seattle Seahawks announced gameday activities for the team's annual "Salute to Service" game presented by USAA," held on Monday, November 7 versus the Buffalo Bills. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. and all gates open at 2:30 p.m. USAA is the Official Military Appreciation Sponsor of the NFL and Seahawks.
Special Forces Staff Sergeant Jonathan A. McLaughlin will lead the team out of the tunnel carrying a U.S. flag. On August 23, 2016, while on a foot patrol in Helman Province, Afghanistan, Staff Sgt. McLaughlin was severely injured by an improvised explosive device. The explosion took the life of another U.S. service member and as many as six Afghan soldiers were wounded. Staff Sergeant McLaughlin represents the 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne), Joint Base Lewis McChord (JBLM) and plans to return to duty once he recovers from his injuries.
Former Green Beret Special Forces member and free agent Nate Boyer, will raise the 12 Flag prior to kickoff. Boyer served in the U.S. Army's 10th Special Forces Group and was deployed multiple times to Iraq and Afghanistan including two summers with the Texas Army National Guard. He was a walk-on long snapper at the University of Texas and signed as an undrafted free agent with the Seahawks in spring, 2015. Following his release from the team, Boyer climbed Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness about the global clean-water crisis and launched a non-profit called MVP, Merging Veterans and Players. MVP empowers combat vets and former NFL players to live a life full of pride and purpose while re-establishing a sense of relevance, dignity, and value in the world with both a healthy body and healthy mind.
Retired Petty Officer First Class Generald Wilson will sing the anthem. Wilson has sung at more than 80 professional sports games over the past 16 years. He is currently a Praise Team Leader at Christian Embassy Church in Black Jack, Missouri. Immediately following the anthem, representatives from Washington Army National Guard will conduct a fly-over with a two Black Hawk helicopters.
The team, in conjunction with USAA, will host more than 200 local service members on the field during the national anthem. Many Seahawks suite owners will host more than 100 service members to watch the game.
The Joint Honor Guard is comprised of active duty military service member's representing all branches of the armed services. Along with the national flag, the joint-service color guard carries the flags for the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines and Navy and is led by Staff Sergeant Frank Dunbar of the I Corps Honor Guard, JBLM.
As part of "USAA's Why We Salute" program, the team will wear stickers on their helmets in honor of all five military branches. Also during pregame ceremonies, a special military USAA Challenge Coin will be used for the coin toss.
During halftime, the team will award eight Segways and four ALLY Chair adapted Segways to combat veterans in partnership with Segs4Vets. Segs4Vets is a non-profit organization that provides mobility devices to severely injured service members from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.
The Seahawks and USAA will recognize retired U.S. Army Gunner Allan Clarey during the Salute to Service moment held at the end of the 3rd Quarter in the northwest end zone. During his service in Vietnam as part of the 2nd Battalion 32nd Mechanized Field Artillery unit, Gunner Clarey was awarded three Purple Hearts and a bronze star. Diagnosed with cancer five years ago, he continues to model "service above self" and demonstrates daily that helping others in need is the most important character trait.
Volunteers from Rainier Scholars will be distributing the Seahawks Gameday Magazine for $5 as part of the Spirit of 12 Partners program. All proceeds raised will be matched 100% by the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation.
American Family Insurance Touchdown City is free and opens at 2 p.m. Seahawks Legend Ken Hamlin will be signing autographs from 3:30-4:30 p.m. at the American Family Insurance Legends Experience. U.S. Army National Guard band, Full Metal Racket, will perform on the main stage from 3:20-5:15 p.m.
Additional activities include the following:
- Two 13'x 24' high definition/resolution screens for fans to watch other NFL games
- Interactive games and contests
- Photo opportunities
- Airbrush tattoos and hair painting
- Performances by Sea Gals and Blue Thunder
- Sea Gals autograph booth
- Appearance by BOOM, Seahawks mascot
- Opportunity to take images with Taima, team's augur hawk
- The Pro Shop kiosks
- CenturyLink Quarterback Challenge for a chance to win the opportunity to compete for $5,000
- 710 ESPN Seattle and KIRO Radio 97.3 FM pregame show featuring live reports and analysis with host Dori Monson and Seahawks Legends Sam Adkins, Jordan Babineaux, Paul Moyer and Dave Wyman
U.S. Army I Corps Band will perform rock music on the outdoor stage located at the northwest entrance to the stadium from 3-5 p.m. and at the same location immediately following the game.
American Express Section 12 will be staged at the northwest entrance. American Express card members will be able to charge their phones and meet Seahawks Legend Shaun Alexander.
The team's retail locations will offer a variety of "Salute to Service" merchandise throughout the month with a pledge to donate 10% of the sales to Segs4Vets. Fans will also be able to make a donation at all registers during check-out. The Pro Shop's Salute to Service merchandise includes jerseys, t-shirts and sweatshirts from Nike; caps and beanies from New Era, plus footballs and more. The Pro Shop retail stores are located at CenturyLink Field, downtown Seattle, Renton Landing and Alderwood Mall. In addition, 100% of the proceeds from game-used Salute to Service items sold on auctions.seahawks.com will be allocated to Segs4Vets.
Seahawks fans are encouraged to plan ahead and arrive early to enjoy game day activities and avoid any traffic or parking delays. A transportation guide is available at Seahawks Gameday Guide.
The hashtags for Monday's game against the Bills is #BUFvsSEA and #SaluteToService. Fans are encouraged to tweet their gameday photos to @12s, an account curated by the Seahawks, using the hashtag #WeAre12. Snapchat users can now choose from a special Seahawks Snapchat filter while at CenturyLink Field on gameday. For stadium and traffic updates, follow and direct questions to @CenturyLink_Fld. The customer service staff at The Pro Shop is also ready to address any retail related questions at @SeahawksProShop.
The Seahawks "Salute to Service" game presented by USAA, is part of the National Football League and NFL Players Association Salute to Service campaign. Visit NFL.com/salute for more information.
Segs4Vets is a nonprofit organization that awards Segways and ALLY Chair adapted Segways to men and women of the United States military who have sustained severe injuries while serving the U.S. in Operation Iraqi Freedom and/or Operation Enduring Freedom. The program began in 2005 as an unprecedented grass-roots effort led by volunteers. As of today, the program has awarded over 1,600 mobility devices. Visit www.segs4vets.ngo for more information.
The USAA family of companies provides insurance, banking, investments, retirement products and advice to 11.8 million current and former members of the U.S. military and their families. Known for its legendary commitment to its members, USAA is consistently recognized for outstanding service, employee well-being and financial strength. USAA membership is open to all who are serving our nation in the U.S. military or have received a discharge type of Honorable - and their eligible family members. Founded in 1922, USAA is headquartered in San Antonio. For more information about USAA, follow us on Facebook or Twitter (@USAA), or visit usaa.com.
The Seahawks adopted a new military unit for the 2016 season on Tuesday, October 11 at CenturyLink Field in a USAA 'Change of Command' ceremony that saw U.S. Navy, Region Northwest accept the honor from U.S. Marine Corps, Security Force Battalion, Bangor WA.