Kyle Schwarber appears to be the next Cubs superstar that is using his fame for a great cause off the field. Anthony Rizzo has taken the lead for the Chicago Cubs when it comes to dedicating time and energy into non-baseball causes with his endless work on childhood cancer research and now Schwarber has selected his cause. Wednesday night he launched his “Neighborhood Heroes” project that recognizes first responders and honor their heroism, courage and devotion to duty.
Schwarber invited 45 police officers, veterans, and firefighters to Wednesday night’s 7-5 win over his “hometown” Cincinnati Reds. Schwarber grew up about an hour north of Cincinnati in Middletown, OH and is directly tied to the “Neighborhood Heroes” campaign that he began. His father, sister, and cousin all have served as first responders in addition to his mother being a nurse so the personal connection to the cause is strong for the Cubs leadoff hitter.
Schwarber addressed the group before the game Wednesday and said he wanted to start Neighborhood Heroes simply to recognize them for their service.
“I just wanted to do something special for you guys — you deserve it,” Schwarber told the group.
So next time you’re bashing Schwarber because he doesn’t hit a 462-foot bomb in every at-bat like you’d like him to, remember he’s a 24-year-old kid who has enough respect to honor those who put their lives on the line everyday for people like you and me. It’d be easy for Schwarber to get caught up in all the hype that surrounds him but his focus has always been on the team’s success and now he’s shining a light on those who we often take for granted.
One of the veterans recognized Schwarber’s character is a rarity with young, popular athletes these days.
“To come to 2017, and have a player like Mr. Schwarber reach out to the veterans, it means a lot.”
Tip of the cap to you Kyle, well done.