Warren Spahn played his entire 21-year baseball career in the National League. He won 20 games or more in 13 seasons, including a 23–7 record when he was age 42. Spahn was the 1957 Cy Young Award winner, and was the runner-up three times, all during the period when one award was given, covering both leagues. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1973, with 83% of the total vote. Spahn chose to enlist in the United States Army, after finishing the 1942 season in the minors. He served with distinction, and was awarded a Purple Heart. He saw action in the Battle of the Bulge and at the Ludendorff Bridge as a combat engineer, and was awarded a battlefield commission. Spahn returned to the major leagues in 1946 at the age of 25, having missed three full seasons. Had he played, it is possible that Spahn would have finished his career behind only Walter Johnson and Cy Young in all-time wins.
Hank Bauer played with the New York Yankees (from 1948 to 1959) and Kansas City Athletics (from 1960 to 1961). He served as the manager of the Athletics in both Kansas City (196162) and in Oakland (1969), as well as of the Baltimore Orioles (196468), guiding the Orioles to the World Series title in 1966, a four-game sweep over the heavily favored Los Angeles Dodgers. This represented the first World Series title in the franchise's history. One month after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Bauer enlisted in the Marine Corps and served with the 4th Raider Battalion and G Company, 2nd Battalion, 4th Marines. While deployed to the Pacific Theater, Bauer contracted malaria on Guadalcanal, but he recovered from that well enough to earn 11 campaign ribbons, two Bronze Stars and two Purple Hearts in 32 months of combat. Bauer was wounded his second time during the Battle of Okinawa, when he was a sergeant in command of a platoon of 64 Marines. Only six of the 64 Marines survived the Japanese counterattack, and Bauer was wounded by shrapnel in his thigh. His wounds were severe enough to send him back to the US
Al Blozis was drafted in the fifth round of the 1942 NFL Draft and played offensive tackle for the New York Giants. He played for the Giants in 1942 and 1943 before entering the military. He was also able to play three games in 1944 while on furlough. Blozis was inducted into the United States Army on December 9, 1943. He was first assigned to duty as a physical instructor at Walter Reed General Hospital and then went through Officers' training at Fort Benning. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the 28th Infantry Division. On January 21, 1945, his platoon was in the Vosges Mountains of France scouting enemy lines. When two of his men, a Sergeant and a private, failed to return from a patrol, he went in search of them alone. He never returned. Blozis was first listed as missing, but in April of that year his death was confirmed. His remains were buried at the Lorraine American Cemetery and Memorial in Saint-Avold, Moselle.
Jack Lummus was a two-sport athlete at Baylor University, a professional football player with the New York Giants, and an officer in the United States Marine Corps. He fought, and died, at the Battle of Iwo Jima during World War II and received the Medal of Honor for his service.
Hank Greenberg in the Major primarily for the Detroit Tigers as a first baseman in the 1930s and 1940s. A member of the Baseball Hall of Fame and a two-time MVP winner, he was one of the premier power hitters of his generation and is widely considered as one of the greatest sluggers in baseball history. Greenberg became the first American League player to register for the nation's first peacetime draft. In the spring of 1941, the Detroit draft board initially classified Greenberg as 4F for "flat feet" after his first physical for military service and was recommended for light duty. The rumors that he had bribed the board, and concern that he would be likened to Jack Dempsey who had received negative publicity for failure to serve in World War I, led Greenberg to request to be reexamined. On April 18, he was found fit for regular military service and was reclassified. While serving as an anti-tank gunner, he was promoted to sergeant, but was honorably discharged on December 5 (the United States Congress released men aged 28 years and older from service), two days before Japan bombed Pearl Harbor. Greenberg re-enlisted as a sergeant on February 1, 1942, and volunteered for service in the Army Air Forces, becoming the first major league player to do so. He graduated from Officer Candidate School and was commissioned as a first lieutenant in the Air Corps and was assigned to the Physical Education Program. In February 1944, he was sent to the U.S. Army Special Services school. Promoted to captain, he requested overseas duty later that year and served in the China-Burma-India Theater for over six months, scouting locations for B-29 bomber bases and was a physical training officer with the 58th Bomber Wing. He was a Special Services officer of the 20th Bomber Command, 20th Air Force in China when it began bombing Japan on June 15. He was ordered to New York, and in late 1944, to Richmond, Virginia. Greenberg served 47 months, the longest of any major league pla
Rocky Bleier was a halfback for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1968 and from 1971 to 1980. After his rookie season with the Steelers, Bleier was drafted into the U.S. Army in December 1968 during the Vietnam War. He volunteered for duty in South Vietnam and shipped out for Vietnam in May 1969 assigned to Company C, 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry 196th Light Infantry Brigade and assigned as a squad grenadier operating a 40mm M79 grenade launcher. On August 20, while on patrol in Heip Duc, Bleier was wounded in the left thigh by an enemy rifle bullet when his platoon was ambushed in a rice paddy. While he was down, an enemy grenade landed nearby after bouncing off a fellow soldier, sending shrapnel into his lower right leg. He lost part of his right foot in the blast as well. He was later awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. While he was recovering in a hospital in Tokyo, doctors told him that he could not play football again. After several surgeries, he was discharged from the military in July 1970 and began informal workouts with Steeler teammates. In the summer of 1974, and he earned a spot in the Steelers' starting lineup.
Gil Hodges was an first baseman and manager who played most of his 18-year career for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers. He was inducted into the New York Mets Hall of Fame in 1982. Hodges also managed the Mets to the 1969 World Series title. He was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1943, and appeared in one game for the team as a third baseman that year. Hodges entered the United States Marine Corps during World War II after having participated in its Reserve Officers' Training Corps program at Saint Joseph's. He served in combat as an anti-aircraft gunner in the battles of Tinian and Okinawa, and received a Bronze Star Medal with Combat "V" for heroism under fire.
Pat Tillman left his NFL career and enlisted in the United States Army in June 2002 in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. Tillman joined the Army Rangers and served several tours in combat before he was killed in the mountains of Afghanistan. At first, the Army reported that Tillman had been killed by enemy fire. Controversy ensued when a month later, on May 28, 2004, the Pentagon notified the Tillman family that he had been killed by a friendly fire incident; the family and other critics allege that the Department of Defense delayed the disclosure for weeks after Tillman's memorial service out of a desire to protect the image of the U.S. military. Tillman was posthumously promoted from specialist to corporal. He also received posthumous Silver Star and Purple Heart medals.
Sandinista soldiers marched a captured rebel (center) into Santo Domingo, Nicaragua, in 1985 after a battle. Hundreds of thousands in Latin America are estimated to have been killed under communist rule. (Associated Press/File)
The U.S. Army's psychological operations community has reversed a 2011 decision to refer to itself as Military Information Support Operations. (Image: U.S. Army Special Operations Center of Excellence)
Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri resigned from his position abruptly Saturday, amid rumors of assassination attempts against him. Reportedly, he met with Saudi officials weeks ago. (Associated Press)
In this Oct. 31, 2017 file photo, paramedics lift an individual into an ambulance near New York City's World Trade Center in New York. A terrorist truck attack on a Manhattan bike path that killed eight people, five of them friends visiting from Argentina, also took a devastating toll on another group of foreign tourists. Three members of a family from Belgium were among a dozen people hospitalized, including the most severely wounded of all, Marion Van Reeth, a mother whose legs were so badly mangled they had to be amputated. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews, File)
American and allied forces executed more airstrikes against Taliban and Islamic State strongholds in the country than in any year since 2014, but the Taliban claimed control of nine districts previously held by government forces over the past six months. (Associated Press/File)