Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin was among an estimated 7,000 people who packed into Cowboys Stadium in suburban Dallas to honor former Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle, who was shot to death at a gun range earlier this month.
“I find it sad to see that flags aren't flying at half-staff for this American hero,” the former Alaska governor said on Facebook in announcing that she and her husband, Todd, were attending the memorial service, Star-Telegram.com in Fort Worth reports.
No politicians spoke at the service. Kyle’s coffin was placed at the 50-yard line as dozens of Navy SEALS stood as the SEAL creed was read.
“I stand before you a broken woman,” Kyle’s widow, Taya, told the crowd, “but always a wife of a warrior, on and off the battlefield. Chris Kyle was ‘all in’ — no matter what he did in life.”
She recalled revealing her flaws to her husband, with Kyle telling her: “You're a package deal. I love you. All of you.”
“Chris,” she told the mourners, “God worked through you to make me the woman I'm supposed to be. He chose well. Thank you for loving me.”
Kyle, 38, and his friend, Chad Littlefield, 35, both of Midlothian, Texas, were shot to death on Feb. 2 at the Rough Creek Lodge near Glen Rose.
The suspect under arrest, Eddie Ray Routh, 25, is a former Marine whom Kyle and Littlefield were hosting for an afternoon of target shooting at the lodge.
Routh has post-traumatic stress disorder from his service in Iraq, and Kyle was reaching out to him, Star-Telegram.com reports.
Kyle wrote “American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History.” He recorded more than 150 kills between 1999 and 2009, although the Pentagon would not confirm the actual number for Kyle’s book. The previous record was 109.
His family held a private funeral earlier Monday, Star-Telegram.com reports. Kyle’s body will be buried in the Texas State Cemetery in Austin on Tuesday.
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