The Salute to Heroes Hockey Game is played to honor those who serve, have served and have been injured or lost in the line of duty. Proceeds from the game benefit the Salute to Heroes Charlotte Foundation. To purchase tickets to the game, please visit the Tickets page. If you would like to become a Sponsor for the event, please email Marc Bochicchio today.
May 2020 - Present
Salute to Heroes Charlotte Inc. is a 501-C(3) non-profit organization formerly known as Great Balls of Fire Inc. In May 2020, the foundation's name changed to align more closely with the organization's growth. While the foundation's mission - supporting first responders and their families in times of need - has not changed, the COVID-19 pandemic brought additional opportunities to help support our Frontline Heroes.
Our annual Charlotte Salute to Heroes Charity Hockey match continues to serve as our main fundraising event, However, the foundation has partnered to help create other events and programs designed to support Frontline Heroes.
Partnership with Mecklenburg EMS
Feed the Frontline Mecklenburg was created by Mecklenburg EMS in partnership with Salute to Heroes Charlotte Inc. (Great Balls of Fire Inc.) and Charlotte Salute to Heroes Hockey. The mission was to provide on-duty meals to Heroes serving on the frontlines during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our goal is to feed every public safety member or support staff in Mecklenburg County at least once. In addition to feeding first responders, the program has helped to coordinate meals for other Frontline Heroes - doctors, nurses, and other various medical professionals and support staff.
The program has a huge impact on the business community as well. We purchase meals from local restaurants paying full price to support these businesses and their team members who have all been impacted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Truly, this has been a win-win situation from the start.
Partnership with Firehouse Subs
Feed the Truckers was the creation of Tim Goss with Firehouse Subs. Goss and Firehouse Subs asked to create a partnership during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to provide coordination and volunteers for events at North Carolina weigh stations. When truckers pull in their vehicles to be weighed, volunteers provide the truckers with complementary box lunches and beverages. Truckers are real Heroes. Without them, our country's essential supplies - food, water, medicines and more - would not reach our communities in their time of need.
Prior to May 2020
Great Balls of Fire Inc. was founded by officer Danny Graham in late 2006. The mission of Great Balls of Fire is to assist sworn public safety personnel with financial need due to injury or illness. Inspiration for the creation of the organization came after a friend, Officer John Pou, was paralyzed from the chest down in a tragic accident in June 2005. As medical expenses mounted, the financial drain on the Pou family became burdensome and officers sought a way to offer financial assistance to the family. The Great Balls of Fire Charitable Foundation was born.
In 2017 Great Balls of Fire Inc. became the primary Foundation for the Annual Charlotte Heroes Hockey Game. The Foundation now supports sworn public safety members and their families in both North and South Carolina. In addition to helping public safety members and families, the Foundation supports other accredited 501-C(3) Foundations that assist public safety and military families in need.
Through the help of various organizations and countless volunteers, we've been able to assist a number of public safety families in their time of need without them asking for help. Click here to see some of the organizations and foundations the game supports. On behalf of Charlotte Heroes Hockey, we thank you for your interest and support.