Community gathers to pay their respects as the funeral procession for fallen York City firefighter Zachary Anthony moves through York City, Thursday, March 29, 2018.
This is our chance.
It’s our chance to come together as a community for a cause that every single York County resident can rally behind.
It’s our chance to show that we really do care about the men and women who risk their lives every day to make sure we’re safe.
It’s our chance to remember and honor the memory of three courageous men who lost their lives in the performance of their duties.
Sunday, May 13, will present each of us with that chance.
The York Revolution announced Tuesday, April 10, that 50 percent of the proceeds from their May 13 game will be donated to funds created to support the families of York City firefighters Zachary Anthony and Ivan Flanscha and Deputy U.S. Marshall and York County resident Christopher David Hill.
Anthony and Flanscha died after a wall collapse at the old Weaver Piano & Organ Co. building at 127 N. Broad St. on Thursday, March 22. The building burned down the day before.
Hill was killed by friendly fire while serving a warrant in Harrisburg in January.
The Sunday afternoon game against the New Britain Bees is the Revolution’s annual “Emergency Responders Day” event, when local police officers, firefighters and emergency medical technicians receive free tickets to the 1 p.m. game and their families and friends enjoy discounted tickets.
This year, that game will take on significantly increased meaning. It will be much more than just another baseball game.
“We are just as moved by the courage and sacrifice of these public servants as our neighbors in the community, and like so many other individuals and groups in our area, we want to do something for the families of these heroes,” said York Revolution president Eric Menzer in a news release.
“We hope that Revolution fans will show just how much they are fans of our local police officers and firefighters by coming out in large numbers to help us make this donation as significant as possible."
Menzer said the team also will work with area police officers and firefighters to organize a “pass-the-boot” drive inside the ballpark that night to further support the victims’ families.
This kind of charitable activity is nothing new for the Revs. The franchise has long been a valued partner in helping better the York community.
That this event will take place at the Revs’ stadium, now known as PeoplesBank Park, is also completely appropriate.
Since it was constructed more than a decade ago, the stadium just a couple blocks from Continental Square has become, in many ways, the living hub of the York community.
It’s not just a ballpark. It’s also where we go to watch fireworks, listen to concerts and celebrate a number of public-spirited events.
The park also is just blocks from where the firefighters died and where they worked.
For all of those reasons, folks from every corner of York County, and beyond, need to pack PeoplesBank Park on May 13.
On that day, there must not be a red-and-blue divide.
There must be one united community, standing in solidarity to remember the fallen, share our grief and help their families.
This is our chance to show our true colors.
— Steve Heiser is sports editor for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. For tickets to the May 13 game, visit www.yorkrevolution.com, call 717-801-4487 or visit the York Revolution ticket office.