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Photos by Miles Kennedy/Philadelphia Phillies

Military heroes honored at Phillies Salute to Service presented by Toyota

May 20, 2024

Military heroes took the field during the Phillies ‘Salute to Service’ presented by Toyota before Saturday’s game against the Nationals. This special event, held during MLB Armed Forces Weekend, recognized all active members, veterans and military families for their service to our country.

Also highlighted was the important work of Military Connected, a non-profit dedicated to improving the lives of America’s military-connected community through employer education, talent engagement and data-driven research.

The half-hour tribute began with a ballpark-wide recital of the Pledge of Allegiance, which was led by Military Connected representative Cyndee Shankin.


Amongst the cheering crowd, the Phillies and Toyota then recognized Mae Krier, who is an original Rosie the Riveter; veteran Charles Andy Jackson, who served in Beirut; and Vietnam War veterans William B. Storms and Corporal Tom “Buzz” Pyle.

Another emotional moment was when World War II veteran Paul Trumbetas, who at 100 years young had the honor of throwing the ceremonial first pitch to the Phillie Phanatic, while accompanied by his family and Major, the team’s service pup in training for veterans with disabilities.

Phillies day-of-game employees who served in the U.S. military were also recognized, all before the entrance of the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst Air Force Honor Guard. Then, Staff Sergeant Danielle Headrick performed a beautiful rendition of the national anthem.


The event came to a thrilling conclusion as the U.S. Navy Leap Frogs Parachute Team made a big entrance parachuting into Citizens Bank Park.

The Phillies and Toyota continued to honor our nation’s heroes throughout the game, with a 3rd inning base change by Military Connected representative. Kyle Hoffman and a terrific performance by U.S. Army Veteran Tiffany McKeaney, who sang “God Bless America” in the middle of the 7th inning.