Nate Boyer – A Duty to Empower Mankind

by | Nov 6, 2023 | Sports | 0 comments

Special Salute to American Heroes Edition

The definition of an American hero is one of those conventional phrases that is rooted in deep honor and tradition. While it is a term that is well-known it is not one taken lightly. To utter the words is to speak volumes on why a person deserves the title.

Nate Boyer is one of those coveted people who warrants the moniker. His storied life is worthy of a best-selling novel with chapters or rich, page-turning material that captivates the imagination. As a United States Army Green Beret, football player and entertainment personality he has embarked on a personal mission for decades that pays tribute to the pride that being an American citizen represents.

Nate Boyer at First Annual Salute to American Heroes

The icon, who grew up in California, didn’t lead an ordinary young man’s existence. In 2004, becoming a relief worker in Sudan so he could help refugees of the War in Darfur was a unique and heartfelt start to a life of service. Shortly after he enlisted in the United States Army and later was accepted into the Green Berets. After several tours in both Iraq and Afghanistan, he respectfully earned an honorable discharge after years of service.

First Annual Salute to American Heroes

His long list of duties included Special Operations Joint Task Force-Afghanistan, 10th and 1st Special Forces Group, and he even over the time completed multiple Joint Command Exchange Training Missions to Israel, Bulgaria, and Greece. His experiences and the tragic memories of 9/11, which inspired him to enlist in the U.S. Army as a Special Forces candidate to begin with, drove a passionate determination that was what made him graduate with a Green Beret initially.

A next step in Boyer’s life led him to the gridiron where he began as a player for the Texas Longhorns, where he served as the starting long snapper on from 2012-14. Then in 2012 Boyer received the Disney Spirit Award at the ESPN College Football Awards, which was followed by the 2013 National Football Foundation Legacy Award. Boyer was even named the 2012-13 Big 12 Sportsperson of the Year and became the first-ever recipient of the Armed Forces Merit Award presented by the Football Writers Association of America. In 2014, he was also an Academic All-American.

Going from a college football walk-on player to signing with the Seattle Seahawks as an undrafted free agent in 2015 was a huge follow up and next big step in his adult career. It was at this time that he famously advised Colin Kaepernick who had been sitting during the National Anthem that if he could not stand for the flag, then taking the knee would be more respectful.

Boyer continues to be actively engaged with several Veterans Service Organizations as well as several other non-profits. Sports and military service continue to imbue his philanthropic ways.  As the co-founder and board president of Merging Vets & Players, his mission to be a changemaker continues. MVP empowers combat veterans and former professional athletes by connecting them after the uniform comes off; providing them with a new team to assist with transition, promote personal development, and show them they are never alone.

“I’m just glad that there’s at least a good amount of people that have supported me and supported MVP,” says Boyer. “They have rallied around what we’re doing, which is all the dirty work, the tough stuff. So many of our staff members use this big platform to truly give fully to the veteran community. You see a shift. You see them go from someone that maybe was a little bit isolated or didn’t believe in themselves to doing some incredible stuff and taking charge. It helps them emerge as a leader. When you see that growth that’s what is really rewarding.”

Helping men and women who served address the challenges that combat veterans and former professional athletes face in transition once the uniform comes off is a duty that he takes seriously. It is also an attitude that has made him a compassionate figure and leading authority in global media.

“It’s just such a big part of who I am,” reflects Boyer. “Living in the uniform for quite a while – whether it was camouflage or the football jersey – was a big part of my life. There were challenges and hardships. I always remember what shaped me. I try to do the best that I can to continue to tell those stories and help change the narrative about who we are and what we’re capable of doing. I think it’s going to forever be with me as far as being a part of that community and doing everything I can to service it.”

In 2017, Boyer appeared in the “Madden NFL 18” video game’s story where he portrayed Captain McCarthy, a soldier who assists protagonist Devin Wade in rediscovering a love for football. There was also a popular ESPN documentary about the icon called “The Long Shot.” “MVP” followed and was his directorial debut. The project documented the true story of the formation of the organization that was co-founded with Jay Glazer. In 2023, he began hosting the Discovery Channel reality competition series “Survive the Raft.

And for all his success, he continues to focus and put on the forefront philanthropy by finding ways to always help others feel the same level of upward mobility.

“Getting people to trust and to believe that not only you care, but that you believe they are worth it is key,” he emphasizes.

Pride and an attitude that “anything is possible” is not only inspirational. It is a driving force behind the overall principles of being an American hero that deserves grand appreciation. It is a motto of Boyer that carries the empowering message that builds the American hero that we need more than ever today.