Former SEAL sniper talks movie, military service in Augusta

Former Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle (right) talks with Lance Cpl. Marc Pietrow at the uptown VA hospital.

Chris Kyle laughs when asked about movie actor Bradley Cooper’s portrayal of his tours in Iraq as a Navy SEAL sniper.

His friends haven’t let up that Cooper was voted People magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive in 2011.

“I told (Cooper) we’d first have to drag him face down in gravel,” said Kyle, whose 150 confirmed kills during his four tours make him the deadliest sniper in U.S. military history.

Kyle, the author of The New York Times best-seller American Sniper, shook hands with service members Friday morning at the uptown Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center’s active-duty rehab center.

On Thursday night, he had been a speaker at the Frank S. Dennis Jr. Lectureship Series held by University Health Care System.

The upcoming movie is Cooper’s first announced project for his Warner Bros.-based production company, 22nd & Indiana.

The Navy’s elite fighting force, the Sea, Air and Land teams, gained worldwide attention when SEAL Team 6 stormed Osama bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan and killed the terrorist in 2011. That was followed by Act of Valor, a film featuring SEALs.

Kyle’s advice for anyone interested in joining the military or becoming a SEAL is to first get a college degree.

A young person who has experienced the world instead of joining out of high school is better prepared for the military, Kyle said.

He suggested joining as an enlisted member before gaining an officer’s commission to better understand how orders affect the ranks.

Reach Kyle Martin at (706) 823-3221

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