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Memorial held for SEAL sniper slain on gun range

ARLINGTON, Texas -- As military service members carried the flag-draped coffin out of Cowboys Stadium, the sounds of bagpipes echoed and people saluted Chris Kyle, 38, an ex-Navy SEAL sniper who dedicated his post-military career to helping other veterans.

His widow, Taya Kyle, spoke through tears earlier, surrounded by her husband's military friends, her voice trembling as she described to a crowd of thousands what "my slow-talking Texas man" had meant to his family, friends and country.

"Chris, there isn't enough time to tell you everything you mean to me and everything you taught me," the widow said Monday during a two-hour memorial service for Kyle. The decorated warrior and best-selling author was slain earlier this month at a Texas gun range.

Nearly 7,000 people, including former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and her husband, attended the service.

His friends and fellow service members told mourners that Kyle was more than an excellent sniper feared by U.S. enemies. He was a dedicated family man known for his sense of humor, compassion, selflessness and generosity, they said. Kyle completed four tours of duty in Iraq and wrote the best-selling book "American Sniper."

Kyle's funeral service is scheduled for Tuesday. He will be buried at the Texas State Cemetery in Austin after a 200-mile funeral procession.

Iraq War veteran Eddie Ray Routh, 25, has been charged in the Feb. 2 killings of Kyle and his friend Chad Littlefield at a North Texas gun range. Routh is being held in Erath County on $3 million bond.

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