Local Airmen, NBA players provide community service

Airman 1st Class Armando Pena, 649th Munitions Squadron, cleans mirrors in the newly remodeled gymnasium at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Nov. 3. The ‘Commitment to Service’ initiative includes all 30 NBA teams and their local military personnel who perform a local service project each year around Veterans Day, which benefits current and retired service members and their families. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

Airman 1st Class Armando Pena, 649th Munitions Squadron, cleans mirrors in the newly remodeled gymnasium at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Nov. 3. The ‘Commitment to Service’ initiative includes all 30 NBA teams and their local military personnel who perform a local service project each year around Veterans Day, which benefits current and retired service members and their families. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

Airman 1st Class Armando Sarcaro, 75th Air Base Wing, cleans windows at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Nov. 3. In honor of Veterans Day, Utah Jazz players and personnel and Orbital ATK executives worked alongside Utah Soldiers and Airmen at the VA during the Department of Defense’s annual ‘Commitment to Service’ initiative.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

Airman 1st Class Armando Sarcaro, 75th Air Base Wing, cleans windows at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Nov. 3. In honor of Veterans Day, Utah Jazz players and personnel and Orbital ATK executives worked alongside Utah Soldiers and Airmen at the VA during the Department of Defense’s annual ‘Commitment to Service’ initiative. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

Airman 1st Class Terrell Williams, 75th Force Support Squadron, cleans workout equipment at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Nov. 3. Hill Air Force Base Airmen teamed up with community partners for the Department of Defense’s annual ‘Commitment to Service’ project, an enterprise aimed at bettering communities across the nation. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

Airman 1st Class Terrell Williams, 75th Force Support Squadron, cleans workout equipment at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Nov. 3. Hill Air Force Base Airmen teamed up with community partners for the Department of Defense’s annual ‘Commitment to Service’ project, an enterprise aimed at bettering communities across the nation. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

Utah Jazz players Derrick Favors and George Hill visit with a veteran at the newly remodeled gymnasium at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City during the annual NBA/Department of Defemnse service project called ‘Commitment to Service,’ Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

Utah Jazz players Derrick Favors and George Hill visit with a veteran at the newly remodeled gymnasium at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City during the annual NBA/Department of Defemnse service project called ‘Commitment to Service,’ Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Cromar)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah -- Hill Air Force Base Airmen teamed up with community partners Nov. 3 for the annual ‘Commitment to Service’ project, an enterprise aimed at bettering communities across the nation.

The event, organized by Orbital ATK, consisted of Utah Jazz players and personnel and Orbital ATK executives working alongside Utah Soldiers and Airmen at the George E. Whalen Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Salt Lake City. The service project consisted of a fall cleanup of the hospital’s outdoor courtyard, visits with hospitalized veterans, and an unveiling of the newly refurbished gymnasium.

The remodeled gymnasium includes new wall paint, a new basketball goal and backboard, and re-painted floor with the Jazz logo at the center.

"Veterans of our military have made great sacrifices to allow us the freedoms we enjoy," said Charlie Precourt, Orbital ATK Propulsion Systems Division vice president and general manager.

"By participating and sponsoring this service project at the VA Hospital we hope to convey our commitment to serving them and their families, and show our gratitude to them for their efforts to secure our freedom."

On Friday, Nov. 4, the Jazz hosted Military Appreciation Night presented by XO Communications. During the game at Vivint Smart Home Arena against the San Antonio Spurs, Jazz players wore ‘Hoops for Troops’ shooting shirts and socks to commemorate Veterans Day. Prior to tipoff, fans were invited to participate in a national anthem singalong. Additionally, the team recognized veterans and military members throughout the evening and a reenlistment ceremony occurred at halftime.

"Participating in the NBA's Hoops for Troops Week is just one way for our organization to show its appreciation to our military members," said Steve Starks, Utah Jazz president. "We are proud to stand by these servicemen and women and give them the recognition they deserve for their sacrifices to our country."

The Department of Defense initiative includes all 30 NBA teams and their local military personnel who perform a local service project each year around Veterans Day, which benefits current and retired service members and their families.