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Giants Coach Tom Coughlin To Receive U.S. Army Outstanding Civilian Service Award

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For years, Tom Coughlin has honored the servicemen and women who, as he likes to put it, allow us to sleep "under the blanket of freedom."


This month, one branch of the military will return the favor by honoring the Giants' coach.


On May 23, Coughlin will be one of five recipients of the Outstanding Civilian Service Award, the third-highest public service honor the U.S. Army can bestow upon a civilian. The award will be presented to Coughlin by Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, the current Chief of Staff of the Army, a Dover native, avid Giants fan and close friend of Coughlin.


Among the others scheduled to be honored that day are: Ravens coach John Harbaugh and Bob Delaney, a Paterson native and former NBA referee who now works with veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.


Coughlin is being honored for his work with active military personnel, such as his taking part in the NFL-USO Coaches Tour of the Persian Gulf three years ago, and his acknowledging veterans, as he does each Veterans Day by inviting Wounded Warriors to practice and to that week's game. In 2008, Coughlin took the team to Walter Reed Medical Center before the visit to the White House, where they were honored by then-President Bush. The team is planning to involve service members in this year's visit as well.


Coughlin, who shows reverence toward the troops during each game's National Anthem, has also welcomed Lt. Col. Greg Gadson into the Giants' inner circle since former assistant coach Mike Sullivan introduced Gadson to the team in 2007.


Gadson, who lost both of his legs in Iraq, will remain an inspirational presence for the Giants, despite Sullivan's joining the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' staff this offseason. Gadson also has a a role in the movie Battleship and will attend the premiere aboard the USS Intrepid on Tuesday. Justin Tuck is scheduled to attend the screening.



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