Recently, USO of New England and the Boston Celtics made dreams come through with their “Seats for Soldiers” program, giving away free tickets to over 500 service members and their families. Even more amazing, these families were virtually connected to local soldiers live on the Jumbotron from USO Baghdad!
Executive Director Jean M. Mallon shared some thoughts on the event, giving “A big kudos and thank you from USO New England and all of the service members and families of the 101engineers who participated in the live video “shout out” at the Seats for Soldiers Celtics game on Friday evening.
We invited the families of the members to the game, and in addition to seeing their loved ones hailed by the crowd we were able to bring them to the AV room, so they could have a few moments to say hello in private. It was a great morale boost for all.”
Jack Swayze, the IT Administrator for the USO, was called in to coordinate the technical aspects so the families could connect. “This was an amazing event,” explained Swayze. “Not only were we able to bring happiness to the troops and their families, but I was able to use some fun technology to achieve the goal. I’m not a big Basketball fan, but I did watch the entire game with the guys, so I could watch them enjoy themselves and see their excitement when they talked to their families and loved ones. It was one of the best video streaming events I have been apart of.”
We are so proud of our staff, volunteers, Boston Celtics fans, and everyone who brought this event together. But most importantly, we’re proud of our Troops serving here and abroad; we’re honored to provide that touch of home for them. Check out the photos below!
Troops at USO Baghdad share some smiles and laughter as they realize their families are viewing them on the Jumbotron during the Celtics "Seats for Soldiers" event.
It's a family reunion of sorts in the AV room at the Garden as a Mom and her Daughter say hi to Dad, serving overseas and on screen courtesy of the USO.
Service members were also honored at the game. Several of them took the opportunity to pose with the Celtics Dancers on the court at half time.