October 8, 2009, - 12:43 pm

Very Sad: 3-Yr Iraq War Veteran Becomes NFL Rookie, Gets Cut, Dies

By Debbie Schlussel

Say a prayer for the late patriot Tony Fein and his family.  As a soldier, he did not die in battle or even from war-related injuries.  But he bravely served our country in Iraq for over three years, and his story is heart-wrenching, nonetheless.  He couldn’t seem to catch a break.  And, yet again, we’re shown that life is fleeting as are dreams, even when you do things right and work hard.


Fein, an Iraq War veteran, finally got his dream to play in the NFL at age 27  . . . but only in the pre-season.  He played for the Baltimore Ravens, but was cut by the team in their final cuts in September.  He died on Tuesday, never having had the chance to entertain interest in him from the Canadian Football League.

Tony Fein, an Iraq war veteran and NFL rookie linebacker who played with the Baltimore Ravens during the preseason, has died of unexplained causes after collapsing at a friend’s house in what his agent said appears to be “an accidental situation.” Fein, 27, an undrafted rookie free agent from Mississippi, was lying face down and unconscious, vomiting and barely breathing when medics arrived . . . .

“He was working out and we were discussing football opportunities. That was still his goal,” [his agent, Milton] Hobbs said. “We talked about Canada.”

Some Canadian Football League teams had expressed interest in Fein. . . .

Fein was arrested on Aug. 23 and charged with misdemeanor assault on a police officer after an incident at a restaurant at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor in which the officer reportedly mistook his cellular telephone for a handgun. Fein said he was innocent.

Fein played quarterback for South Kitsap High School before graduating in 2000. At age 19 he enlisted and spent 3 1/2 years in the Army, including duty in Iraq as a 19 Delta reconnaissance scout, according to the Ravens’ web site.

He later enrolled at Scottsdale, Arizona, Community College, became one of the nation’s top junior college recruits and played for the University of Mississippi in 2007 and 2008. In two seasons at Ole Miss, he had 136 tackles (77 solo) in 24 games, according to the school’s Web site.

Tony Fein, Rest In Peace.

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8 Responses

So sad,may he rest in peace in the hands of God.

freedom4usa on October 8, 2009 at 1:05 pm

I know there’s MORE to this story…

Rest in Peace HERO, Safe in the arms of Jesus.

goldenmike4393 on October 8, 2009 at 2:03 pm

People die sometimes for no good reason. Only G-d knows why He decided to cut their time on earth short.

NormanF on October 8, 2009 at 2:05 pm

And I thought I was having a bad day. This puts things in perspective. Very sad.

CaliforniaScreaming on October 8, 2009 at 2:06 pm

Thank you for focusing on the fact he was a veteran, and not the fact he was experiencing legal problems before his untimely death. I am from Baltimore and a overwhelming majority of the news coverage here focused on his arrest, and few even mentioned his military background. As soon as I heard about his death, I made it a point to put a post on my blog about his military background, and the larger picture of veterans being overlooked for more sensational news. Check out my blog itsaveteransworld.wordpress.com, I would love to hear from you.

Heather on October 8, 2009 at 10:10 pm

He did not avoid his duty.

Sorrow01 on October 8, 2009 at 10:42 pm

Farewell my Scout Brother! The Cavalry Salutes you. TAPS for a warrior. A Scout will meet you at Heavens Gate!

worldofidiots on October 11, 2009 at 5:36 pm

Very sad. Eternally grateful for his service.

Rob on October 25, 2009 at 10:23 pm

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