An upcoming football game isn’t just for fun, but to honor local law enforcement and firefighters. The Oct. 19 Utica High verses Ford II gridiron game is being dubbed “Hometown Heroes” to recognize Utica, Shelby Township, Sterling Heights police, fire and EMS workers, as well as the Macomb County Sheriff’s Department.
This is the first time a game has been dedicated to the local “heros” and is being played as a way to thank workers for keeping the community safe. All players will have special police, fire and EMS sticker on their helmets.
“It’s nice that they’re recognizing us. Everybody is looking forward to it,” said Shelby firefighter John McCoy.
All men and women in uniform with a badge or ID will receive free admission, a concession ticket, and a special token of appreciation from the Utica football team at the ticket booth.
The Shelby Township Fire Department will bring a ladder truck, and a fire engine for display during the game. The Macomb County Sheriff will have a jet boat and motorcycle. The Shelby Township Firefighters Union Local 1338 donated $500 to Utica High to offset the expenses of the game, McCoy said.
In addition, the UHS players are looking for some heros to play in honor of. For $25, a donar will help outfit a player for the game. The hero’s name will be called over the PA speaker during the game.
"Team members are also looking to play for somebody special," said UHS coach Todd Koehn said. "We are soliciting sponsors for anyone that would like one of our team members to play for their heroes."
Donations are also being sought to sponsor a scholarship for a Utica
High School 2013 graduate who plans to pursue a career in law enforcement. Email Koehn at firstname.lastname@example.org to sponsor a hero or to donate to the scholarship fund.