Kellie Pickler is set to become the first recipient of the Operation Troop Aid Chris Kyle Patriot Award. The country singer is being recognized for her strong support of the United States Armed Forces and their families.
"We are pleased to recognize this young lady as part of our (now) annual tradition; we welcome Kellie to the legacy of Chris Kyle’s service to our military in alliance with Operation Troop Aid," Navy SEAL's parents Wayne Kyle said in a statement. "Words are simply not enough to express our deep gratitude for those, like Ms. Pickler, who freely share their love and support of our military men and women. This award will be one of the great highlights for us each and every year and we are proud to be a part of it."
Pickler will be presented with the honor on June 13 at the 2015 CMA Music Festival at LP Field following a performance of the National Anthem.
Operation Troop Aid (OTA) established their Chris Kyle Patriot Award to honor the man who was the focus of the film "American Sniper."
"Chris Kyle’s dedication to serve and protect our country is demonstrative and symbolic of all our service men and women who make the ultimate sacrifice," OTA founder Mark Woods said in a statement. "To honor Chris' service and resound his personal mantra (‘It is our duty to serve those that serve us’), it is absolutely fitting that we rename our annual award in Chris Kyle’s name, honor and legacy."
Previous OTA Award recipients include Kid Rock, Gary Sinise, Hank Williams Jr., Toby Keith, KISS, Darryl Worley, Aaron Tippin, Mark Wills and Charlie Daniels.