Ed Note: Since today is Veteran's Day, the Purdue athletic department has a special deal for all veterans and active duty personnel. They and their families can get into Saturday's game vs. Michigan State for free. All you need to do is call 765-494-3194 to reserve your tickets and special Will Call area will be set up near Gate A Saturday from 9am-noon. Thanks to Andrew Ledman from the Athletic Ticket Office for sending me this info.
You probably don't know who Abe Trindle is.
My regular readers know that I follow Purdue about as close as anyone and I have no idea who Abe Trindle is. If it wasn't for a feature that Boiled Sports ran about a month ago I still wouldn't know who Abe Trindle is.
Purdue's roster lists him as a 5'10" 185 pound freshman walk on safety. He may never see the field for us like so many other walk-ons. There are a few things that stand out though in his Purdue profile. First, his birth date is listed as December 4th, 1982, making him an almost 27 year old freshman. Second, he is a former Navy SEAL that served three tours of duty in Iraq.
Purdue football: Where certifiable badasses are walk-ons.
Don't let his smiling visage fool you: This man can kill you about 16 times before you even know he is in the room.
I am in reasonably good shape. I work out almost daily and can still run a six minute mile if pressed. There is no way in hell I could walk on to the Purdue football team though. I am sure the process is challenging, no matter how much Rudy glorifies it. I am sure it was a piece of cake for Trindle though. Compared to the requirements for just becoming a Navy SEAL (let alone serving three combat tours) it was probably a walk in the park. Consider the requirements to become a SEAL:
The minimum requirements of the Physical Screening Test are:
- 500 m (550 yd) swim using breast or combat sidestroke in under 12:30 with a competitive time of under 10:30
- At least 42 push-ups in 2 minutes with a competitive count of 79 or more
- At least 50 sit-ups in 2 minutes with a competitive count of 79 or more
- At least 6 pull-ups from a dead hang (no time limit) with a competitive count of 11 or more
- Run 1.5 mi (2.4 km) in boots and trousers in under 11:30 with a competitive time of 10:20 or less
Let's say you can make those requirements. Welcome to BUD/S training then. In short, it is one of the most physically, mentally, and emotionally demanding training regimens devised by man. 70-80% of those who meet the above physical requirements don't even pass the training. As far as I am concerned, if you make it through training, you are a badass that I am not messing with.
So this is Abe Trindle. He has been through that in addition to three combat tours. It is probably safe to say that nothing he sees on the football field will ever frighten him. Purdue's Official Sports Report also talked about this back in October. Trindle is like many other veterans If you did not know his story you would never even know of his service. He quietly did his job for this country just as he quietly does his job for Purdue football. He wanted to give back to his country because it had given him so much.
I mention Abe Trindle because today is Veteran's Day. My grandfather who served in World War II taught me form a very young age to respect those who have served this country. Though he passed away in 1991, the flag that was on his casket sits in a place of honor in my home and always will. I also have another grandfather who served in the Navy during Vietnam, and one who served in Korea in the Navy. A close cousin also served a year long tour during Operation Iraqi Freedom beginning in April 2003. I have nothing but the utmost respect for the men and women that serve this country as their service is a major reason we enjoy the freedoms we enjoy today.
Abe Trindle may be the Purdue football face we all know on Veteran's Day, but everyone has been touched more personally by a veteran in some way. Find them and thank them today for your freedoms.