Amid all of the excitement regarding Saturday's in-state rivalry game against the NAU Lumberjacks, it is very easy for smaller stories to fall through the cracks. Hopefully this one deals with a cause too noble to befall that fate.
Arizona State University will be working in conjunction with the non-profit organization Veteran Tickets Foundation (Vet Tix) to sponsor the game. Vet Tix is a charity that aims to repay all of the great men and women of our military for their dedication and sacrifice. The program donates tickets of any persuasion to military families, from an event as simple as a sporting game, to an event as large as a Broadway show. The program was created three years ago and has already donated well over 100,000 tickets.
"We just want to afford [veterans] the opportunity that they never would have had. A time to take their mind off of the serious nature of everything that is going on in the world, and just have a great time," says Chief Communications Officer Heather Gray. "Everyone that works for Veteran Tickets Foundation is a volunteer. We don't get paid to do this. The reward is getting the letter from a military member that says, ‘I am a veteran of the Vietnam War and I've never just had somebody say thank you'."
Now you will have the chance to support this worthy cause. In a wonderful gesture, ASU, with help from Fox Sports Arizona and KTAR, has pledged to donate one ticket to Vet Tix for every ticket that is bought for Saturday's game.
Former Naval officer Mike Focareto, founder and CEO of Vet Tix, is thrilled to be a part of this special weekend. "Veteran Tickets Foundation is both honored and humbled that ASU has chosen us to participate in the Salute to Our Troops game on September 11," he said. "As both a graduate of ASU and a Veteran, this is one of the single most important milestones and partnerships I could have ever wished for this foundation to achieve."
Gray echoes his sentiments and hopes that everybody in community that is able to participate will do so. "We would encourage people to reach out and donate tickets if you have extras, or, if possible, make a financial donation."
If you are interested in becoming more active in the movement, Heather insists, "Opportunities are always available to volunteer with us to help us meet our mission of giving back to those that gave and thanking them for service."
Tickets for Saturday's game can be found for as cheap as $10 and are available to be purchased online or through the Sun Devil Ticket Office. If you would like more information regarding Vet Tix, please visit their website www.vettix.org.
We hope you will help support this very worthy cause.