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Salute to Service Award

Pete Bercich - Vikings

Pete Bercich (NFL Legend)

From Kuwait to Minnesota, Minnesota Vikings Legend, Vikings Radio Network analyst, former linebacker and coach, Pete Bercich, has made numerous, authentic appreciation to service members. Bercich traveled to Kuwait to spend a week with a Minnesota-based nonprofit that provides special meals and encouragement to service members. "I was at Camp Arifjan," Bercich said. "I'm sitting there and so excited to be here and see what we see and talk to you guys and see what you do. It's just a fascination that I've had with the military for my entire life, a love and appreciation for what they do every day, what they're asked to do, what they're willing to do. I look at it this way: I have the greatest job in the world, being able to do what I do with the Vikings, and without them and the sacrifices they've made throughout centuries, I wouldn't be able to do that." Bercich's support is not deterred by blizzards or artic air. He braved the weather in fall 2020 to surprise two military families with an ultimate tailgating pack and free groceries for a year. Bercich delivered the news, spending extended periods of time with the veterans' families. Bercich instantly connected with these families because his appreciation for the service and sacrifices made by military families runs deep. "It's truly been amazing to be able to do things like this for families like theirs and hear their stories," Bercich said. "I've been a Viking for 25 years, and this is probably one of the most amazing things I've been able to do." One month — November — and one game — when the Vikings annually host their Salute to Service — stand above all others for Bercich. The changing of the guard at the seat that is permanently unoccupied to honor POW/MIA is a solemn reminder of why he's been able to live his dream. "We're here because of the sacrifices they've made," Bercich said.