Mount Mercy gives back to those who have served
It’s a special night, with a special meaning.
When Mount Mercy Academy and Buffalo Seminary take to the floor at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 23, at Mount Mercy Academy, the game will take on a different.
That’s because Mount Mercy and Buffalo Seminary will be playing for more than just a win on this night. They will be playing for all those who have served this country – past and present during the first Mercy’s Heroes basketball game.
All proceeds from the game will benefit the Wounded Warrior Project.
The Wounded Warrior Project is to honor and empower wounded warriors. Its vision is to foster the most successful, well-adjusted, generation of wounded warriors in our nation’s history. The purpose of the WWP is to raise awareness and to enlist the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members; to help injured servicemen and women aid and assist each other; and to provide unique, direct programs and services to meet their needs.
For the Mount Mercy basketball team being able to give back in this way is a special honor and one they didn’t want to pass up.
“I think this is a really great opportunity,” stated Mount Mercy senior Marissa Stack. “It is really something great and Mercy is really stepping up. And, I really think it is going to be a big success.”
It also has a special meaning for a lot of young ladies on the team as some of their family members served in the military at one point or another.
“My grandfather served in the Navy,” said Mount Mercy’s Lee Haggerty. “So, to be able to give back to the people that have served our country, it feels good. And, that is one of the hallmarks of our Mercy education – community service and giving back to out community. So, I am excited to playing in it and I think our team is going to do very well.”
When approached about the event, Mount Mercy coach John Glose didn’t hesitate in giving it the green light. For him, this is a once and a lifetime opportunity the school and the community couldn’t pass up.
“We are very excited here at Mount Mercy, especially my basketball players,” sated Glose. “This came quick to us and we are ready to go. This is a great cause that we are raising money for and everybody is excited.”
Since announcing the initial plans back in October, the buzz is the community has been fantastic. People have come up to Glose and the team asking how they can help. The community has backed Mount Mercy, Buffalo Seminary and the Wounded Warrior Project from the very beginning.
“South Buffalo is a tightknit community,” Glose said. “They are always willing to help each other out and everybody we have reached out to has been able to help us and that is outstanding. It just shows what a tightknit community this is.”
The team hopes they can sell out Mount Mercy Academy (the gym holds roughly 200 people). Playing in front of more than 200 people will be a little nerve racking in the beginning, but something the teams says they will get used to.
“I think it is going to be really exciting,” stated Stack. “Just the entire atmosphere with the gym being so packed is going to be so much to play in. It will be great for everyone to see how much support of these warriors have.”
Events will be planned for the night of the game. Mount Mercy Academy will wear special camouflage jerseys for the event. Each jersey will have a saying on the back of them, like Duty, Honor, Country, Freedom or Service.
The school will also be selling Wounded Warrior Project wristbands. There are only 50 wristbands – so get them while supplies last. Wristbands will be $5 with all the proceeds going to the WWP. Maritime Charter School has also volunteered to send in a Color Guard for the national anthem and will also have students stay for the game.
“I know a lot of the girls have been talking about the game and we are doing a few different things at school to help raise more awareness about it,” stated Haggerty. “I think it will be a great community event and something that we can do year after year.”
Admission for the event is $5 and it will include a program. Refreshments will also be served.
If you would like to donate to the Mercy’s Heroes basketball game please go to https://support.woundedwarriorproject.org/individual-fundraising/mercysheroes/. You can also get to the sight by going to mtmercy.org/athletics/Wounded Warrior basketball game. There you will see a few different options.