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Rays announce free admission for military, veterans to their games

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The Tampa Bay Rays are saving Private Ryan … a seat.

The Rays announced Friday that military personnel and veterans will be able to attend Rays games for free for the rest of the 2015 season.

With what they call the Rays’ Honor Pass program, active servicemen as well as retired or honorably dischaged veterals will be eligible for free tickets to all Rays’ home games. This offer also is good for all dependents of servicemen with a valid dependent’s ID.

It is a generous offer, but it’s one that also makes sense. If the Rays, whose attendance is lagging once again, can get more bodies through the turnstiles, they are sure to make more money on concessions and parking. Plus there is always the goodwill they are generating.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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