Fr. Dan Hall, CSV, saw his worlds collide recently as one of the players on his varsity
football team — where he coaches special teams — drew members of the U.S. Army to present him with a jersey to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl Game in January in San Antonio.
Cole Kmet is a senior tight end for the Lions and he already committed to play next fall at the University of Notre Dame, but now he finds himself among the top players in the country, selected to play in the prestigious high school showdown.
“This is fantastic, to get this kind of national attention,” Fr. Hall said as he watched the ceremony play out.
Among Viatorians, Fr. Hall brings a unique background that includes serving from 1990-1997 as a military chaplain, with the 1st Marine Division at Camp Pendleton in California, as well as with the Naval Support Facility in Diego Garcia, and with the 2nd Marine Division at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.
The combination of qualities it takes on the football field and in the military underscored the remarks during the ceremony.
Right from the start, the Army brass described the U.S. Army All American Bowl as a “unique celebration of American youth and the American soldier.”
Staff Sgt. Christopher Geber formally announced Cole’s selection to the bowl game, and Capt. Joshua Frye and Staff Sgt. Christopher Spain presented him with his jersey and helmet.
“It takes a special person to be a soldier, just as it takes a special athlete to be selected as a U.S. Army All-American,” Geber said. “Only the most capable can wear the colors of the U.S. Army.”