Texas Family of Fallen Hero to Participate in 2018 NFL Draft

Family to Honor Army Capt. Ellery Ray Wallace, who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation while serving in Afghanistan in 2010


ARLINGTON, Va. – For the second year, the National Football League (NFL) will welcome families from the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) to the 2018 NFL Draft.

During Round 2, the NFL will team with TAPS to honor Army Capt. Ellery Ray Wallace, a Texas native, who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation while serving in Afghanistan in 2010. Wallace’s widow and their four children will accompany Cowboys Legend Bob Lilly on-stage to announce the Cowboys’ Round 2 pick on Friday, April 27 in Dallas.

Capt. Wallace grew up in Texas and then attended the University of Utah where he participated in ROTC.  After graduation in 2003, he immediately joined the Army and arrived at Fort Campbell in May of 2008. He was a Cavalry officer commanding Troop B, 1st Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault).

Capt. Wallace died on Aug. 29, 2010, in Nahagahar, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when his military vehicle was struck by a rocket propelled grenade. He is survived by his wife Janelle, and their four children, Liam, Adara, Kael and Elhana.

Two other TAPS families will be guests of the NFL for Round 1 (Thursday, April 26) and Round 3 (Saturday, April 28) of the 2018 NFL Draft.

“TAPS is grateful to the NFL for its longstanding commitment to the men and women of our armed forces,” said Bonnie Carroll, TAPS president and founder. “For the families of those who have lost loved ones in military, the NFL has offered extraordinary experiences on the field where families have honored their fallen heroes and cheered on their favorite teams. The NFL has been honoring TAPS families since their initial engagement in 2015."

As a military nonprofit partner of the NFL, TAPS receives support from the league for programs and resources that positively impact surviving military families. The Pat Tillman Foundation, USO and the Wounded Warrior Project are also NFL charity partners.

The TAPS sports program, teams4taps, creates meaningful opportunities for the surviving families of America's military fallen by engaging with​ ​the athletes and teams they cheered for with their hero. teams4taps works with more than 150 sports teams across the country, and since its inception in 2013, has touched the lives of thousands of surviving military families.

The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) is the national organization providing compassionate care for the families of America’s fallen military heroes and has offered support to more than 75,000 surviving family members of our fallen military and their caregivers since 1994. TAPS provides peer-based emotional support, grief and trauma resources, grief seminars and retreats for adults, Good Grief Camps for children, case work assistance, connections to community-based care, online and in-person support groups and a 24/7 resource and information helpline for all who have been affected by a death in the Armed Forces. Services are provided free of charge. For more information go to www.taps.org or call the toll-free TAPS resource and information helpline at 1.800.959.TAPS (8277).


Please contact Rita Barry-Corke, TAPS Vice President of Media Relations, at rita@taps.org or at (800) 959-8722 for more information or to request an interview.