Four former and current NFL coaches are currently traveling on an NFL-USO Coaches Tour, including New York Jets Special Teams Coach Ben Kotwica. Kotwica who piloted an Apache attack helicopter in Iraq was a part of Operation Iraqi Freedom II.
“I’m just really grateful that I was asked to be part of their wonderful experience in giving back to the soldiers,” Kotwica said. “I know how special it is, as a former officer and soldier myself, when people from the NFL and the USO come over to support the troop
s. I consider myself lucky to have this opportunity.”
Kotwica joins Minnesota Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier and former NFL coach and current ESPN analyst Eric Mangini to meet with members of the U.S. military for several days in the Persian Gulf and to celebrate the Fourth of July with those who keep us free.
Mangini had this to say on the trip: “It’s an amazing opportunity, and incredibly flattering, to have the chance to spend time with our troops. We did a lot of different things both in New York and Cleveland with the military because of the example they set in terms of selflessness, discipline and teamwork. We can’t thank the troops and their families enough for the sacrifices they make to ensure our freedom.”
The NFL and USO have organized these visits for 46 years, as the league became the first sports organizations to send a group of player to Vietnam and other parts of Asia. Such stars as Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long and Johnny Unitas have all been a part of this amazing program, visiting various locations.
For those wanting more information on the USO can do so by clicking on the link below: