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Pittsburgh Steelers’ Alejandro Villanueva said the decision to cover up Antwon Rose Jr.’s name on his helmet was “exclusively” about honoring Alwyn Cashe, an Army veteran.
Villanueva spoke with ESPN about the decision:
“I felt that my decision to honor Sgt. First Class Alwyn Cashe was something that was very personal to me due to the fact that in the veteran community, there’s a strong push to get him a Medal of Honor, which is something that the community believes that he deserves,” Villanueva said, via ESPN. “I think that the timing was perfect due to the fact that it gave the lawmakers a little bit of momentum going forward. The family has been waiting for 15 years to hear something from his chain of command, from Congress regarding the exception of his five-year statutory limit that could potentially get him the Medal of Honor.”
On opening day, Villanueva was the only Steeler not to wear the Rose decal. Maurkice Pouncey, his teammate, the next week joined after learning Rose’s role in the Pittsburgh drive-by shooting.