Since last season, some NFL fans have been upset with players who have been kneeling during the national anthem before games because they feel the players are disrespecting the flag, country, and the men and women who have given their lives to protect the freedoms Americans enjoy.
The kneeling controversy has been at the forefront of the news a lot this season after U.S. President Donald Trump asked owners to fire any player that kneels during the anthem.
After taking a knee to demonstrate unity with his players before a game this season, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said he would bench any player that disrespects the flag.
Since former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick started the kneeling controversy last year, several players have joined him in kneeling during the anthem, but the Dallas Cowboys are one of the few teams in the league that hasn’t had a player take a knee since 2016.
During their game against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, The Dallas Cowboys showed their commitment to those that serve the country when they honored the memory of a Sacramento County Sheriff’s Deputy, who was killed in the line of duty nearly two months ago.
Deputy Robert French was a big Dallas Cowboys fan, so the Cowboys decided to honor his memory by allowing his girlfriend and children to stand on the sidelines during the game.
Kara Merino, French’s girlfriend, came dressed in a custom Cowboys jersey with the French’s name on the back of the jersey. She was joined on the sidelines by her children, who also wore custom Cowboys jerseys.
Letting Merino and her children stand on the sidelines wasn’t the only thing Jones did, the Cowboys owner also spent some time with French’s girlfriend and children, to learn more about French and thank his family for his service.
“(Jones) just said, ‘I’m so sorry for your loss and I hear he was a great man and a huge Cowboys fan,’” Merino said.” “I melted down when he gave me a hug. I just caved.”
“He’d be beside himself right now,” Merino said. French had been a Cowboys fan since his childhood, he grew up in Shreveport, Louisiana, and rooted for the Cowboys because they were the closest NFL team at the time. Merino said he often talked about his respect for Cowboys and their owner Jerry Jones and the team he built. “Meeting Jones was a lifelong dream,” Merino added.
The Cowboys also extended invitations to twenty two members of French’s family, who attended the game. Members of the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department were also invited to the game.
The Cowboys defeated the San Francisco 49ers 40-10, which would surely have made French happy.