WASHINGTON, April 30 (UPI) -- Pat Tillman, the former U.S. football player killed last week in Afghanistan, has been awarded a Silver Star posthumously, the U.S. Army announced Friday.
Tillman was killed in Afghanistan April 22 while fighting a group of terrorists near the Pakistani border. He left behind a multi-milloin dollar NFL career with the Arizona Cardinal to join the Army after the Sept. 11 2001 terrorist attacks.
Tillman, who was leading a team of Rangers at the time of his death, was killed while performing his duty without regard to his personal safety, said a statement issued by the Army Special Operations.
The statement said Tillman was leading a section of his platoon that came under attack in Khowst, a province in Afghanistan. Tillman fought bravely and led his team to a safer location above the enemy's position, the statement said.
Tillman's "leadership and his team efforts" allowed his team to maneuver through the ambush to "positions of safety without a single casualty," said the Army, which awarded him its second highest military honor posthumously.