Photo by Tony Gonzales
Master Sergeant Fernell A. Walker of the United States Army was selected as the GovX Hero of the Game for the Raiders Week 10 AFC Western Division game against the Denver Broncos.
Originally from Louisiana, Walker joined the Louisiana National Guard in 1991 before transferring to active duty Army in 1995.
"I've been doing this for quite a long time," said MSG Walker. "I have over 20 years in the service and I'm still having fun doing it. I like serving my country."
MSG Walker is in the 7th Psychological Operations Group and serves as a senior human resources sergeant for the Army. He is a graduate of the Non-Commissioned Officer's Course, Air Assault Course, Battle Staff Non-Commissioned Officer's Course and Inspector General Course.
He is also a graduate of Franklin University in Columbus, Ohio, where he earned his Bachelor's of Arts degree in Applied Management in 2011, and is a lifelong Raiders fan.
"This is awesome," MSG Walker said when speaking pregame from the sideline. "This is my first time at a real Raiders game since I was a little kid. I've loved the Raiders for over 20 years so this is awesome."
MSG Walker and his son were on the field for pregame warm-ups, and also saw the Raiders starters run out of the players tunnel prior to kickoff.
"I've never been this close to the field for a Raiders game," he said. "This is awesome and I'm really enjoying it."
Sunday's game also marked the Raiders Salute to Service game, and the fact that MSG Walker was in attendance along with so many other members of the military was something of which he was especially proud.
"That's special and near to my heart, just to represent all the soldiers across the world, the vets and the ones that are currently serving," he said. "I don't take it lightly. I'm really honored to be able to do this right here."