The National Football League will kick off its 2003 season with an Operation Tribute to Freedom salute to America’s military. A free concert on the National Mall Sept. 4 will begin at 6 p.m. EDT, featuring legendary rock band Aerosmith, pop princess Britney Spears and rhythm and blues’ Mary J. Blige. Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin will sing the National Anthem to close the concert.
Operation Tribute to Freedom is a Department of Defense initiative that encourages Americans to demonstrate their support for the nation’s fighting forces engaged in the Global War on Terrorism and to ensure that every returning service man and woman is recognized and appreciated.
The concert will be televised live, from 8-9 p.m. on ABC, leading up to the season opener between the Washington Redskins and the New York Jets.
Up to 20,000 troops and their families are expected to attend the event that will also be broadcast via American Forces Radio and Television to more than 800,000 men and women deployed around the world.
All military and DoD personnel who want to attend the concert with their family members should visit www.ima.army.mil and click on the OTF banner to get more information and to register to attend the event.