Former Pittsburgh Steelers and long-time radio analysts Tunch Ilkin and Craig Wolfley hosted their 19th annual Walk for the Homeless on Sunday, and were surprised with one of the city’s highest honors.
Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto and Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald proclaimed June 13 as “Tunch & Wolf Day” in Pittsburgh, honoring the duo’s decades of selfless dedication and service to the community.
The proclamation specifically celebrated Ilkin’s contributions, as he announced his retirement from the radio booth earlier this month to continue his fight against ALS.
Happy Tunch Ilkin Day in #Pittsburgh!— Office of the Mayor (@TheNextPGH) June 13, 2021
Today, Mayor @billpeduto & @ACE_Fitzgerald celebrated Tunch & Wolf’s annual charity walk for @lightoflife.
The Mayor issued a Proclamation to Mr. Ilkin in recognition of his retirement from the @steelers & decades service to our community. pic.twitter.com/M8IMsuc7gA
“We can’t even put into words how grateful we are as an organization for the two of them,” Doug Smith, executive director of Light of Life Rescue Mission, told Steelers.com. “The challenge in today’s world is how many players actually stick around a city for 35 years. I think what is special is, and Tunch always shares the story, is that he walked into Light of Life as a player. There are a lot of charities you can go to as a player, but he said once he walked through the doors of the mission, he has never been the same. That was almost 35 years ago, which is half of our existence at Light of Life.”
While the COVID-19 pandemic forced the majority of the annual event to be held virtually, many still made their way down to the North Shore and walked a 5K or 10K on their own to support the cause. The event aimed to raise $100,000 to combat homelessness in Pittsburgh.
Light of Life Mission has “been a place where hope and healing meet for men, women, and families experiencing homelessness, poverty, or addiction” since 1952. Ilkin and Wolfley have each worked with the organization for nearly 35 years.