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K-State community salutes ‘Big Red One’ during Fort Riley Day game in Manhattan

By J. Parker Roberts | 1ST INF. DIV. PUBLIC AFFAIRS | November 17, 2017

     The Flint Hills and 1st Infantry Division communities came together in force Nov. 11 for Kansas State University’s annual Fort Riley Day football game at Bill Snyder Family Stadium in Manhattan, Kansas.

      Soldiers from Fort Riley were on hand be­fore kickoff to talk with fans and show them the equipment and vehicles they use to accomplish their missions and K-State brought Soldiers onto the field several times during the game.

     Staff Sgt. John Hylander, 2nd Battalion, 70th Armor Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Inf. Div. and the “Big Red One” Noncom­missioned Of­ficer of the Year led the Wild­cats onto the field, and Sgt. 1st Class Rob­ert Carter, 2nd Battalion, 34th Armored Regi­ment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Inf. Div. and president of the Sergeant Audie Murphy Club, joined the team captains for the coin toss.

     “It’s a big honor to be on the same field as the wonderful K-State Wildcats and Bill Snyder,” K-State’s beloved head football coach, Hylander said. “It’s an incredible ex­perience to get to be out here in front of all of these people, get to be so close and meet some of the K-State players.”

     Hylander said the event highlights the unity of Soldiers and civilians and a great op­portunity for the football team and Fort Riley to come together.

     The Commanding General’s Mounted Color Guard presented the American flag dur­ing the national anthem, and the 1st Inf. Div. Band performed with the K-State marching band during the pregame show and at half­time, which featured a salute to the armed forces and to the division’s 100-year legacy.

       “It’s great to get out here and spend time with the local community that does such a great job of supporting us,” said Staff Sgt. Stephen Seefeld, Company C, 101st Brigade Engineer Battalion, 1st ABCT. “It’s awesome to be able to come out and support a big team like this, and actually be here amongst the fans and with the team, watch some actual, good football.”

      During the game, members of the 1st Battalion, 16th In­fantry Regiment, 1st ABCT, came down to the field to do push-ups with each Wildcat touchdown. The “Iron Rang­ers” are the unit partner of the K-State football team, and each player wore the unit’s logo on their helmet during the game.

     “I’m very thankful for the opportunity to come — it’s a real honor to be here,” said Pvt. Curtis Moore, Co. C, 101st BEB, who was among those Soldiers invited to watch the game.

     Moore said the playing of taps before the game was espe­cially significant, as it served to remind fans of the sacrifices made by Soldiers throughout the nation’s history.

      “It’s a good partnership; I feel wanted here,” said Pvt. Talarryonte Lloyd, 82nd Bri­gade Engineer Battalion, 2nd ABCT. “A lot of people have thanked me for my service, and I appreciate it. It’s pretty nice.”

       Lloyd, a combat engineer, said this was his first college football game to attend and, despite the wet weather, he had a great time.

       (Additional reporting by Chad L. Simon, 1st Inf. Div. Public Affairs.)