Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is lending a helping hand in grants to police and firefighter K-9 units through his foundation’s “Giving Back Fund.”
One of the grants went to Firefighter Thomas Cantola and his partner Maya, a two-year-old yellow Labrador retriever, in Girard, Ohio, who are a part of Trumbull County’s K-9 Arson Unit.
The department will receive $2,500 towards safety and training equipment and the creation and certification of new K-9 units.
“In a short time, Maya has proven herself an asset to the City of Girard and the surrounding region. These funds will ensure that we can continue to meet our vital mission,” President of the Girard Professional Firefighters Association Brian Pearson told WFMJ in Youngstown.
A dog owner himself, Roethlisberger has always been an advocate for law enforcement and emergency services and their K-9 counterparts on the front lines.
“To witness the bond between a dog and their handler has been very rewarding,” Roethlisberger told WFMJ in Youngstown. “Their lifesaving & crimefighting gives ‘teamwork’ new meaning. They are truly partners!”
Roethlisberger’s foundation will distribute upwards of $90,000 this year. They have provided millions in support since the foundation’s establishment in 2007.