Phillies to honor nation’s heroes at Saturday's game

May 19th, 2022

On Saturday, May 21, military heroes will take the field for Phillies Salute to Service presented by Toyota, being held at that night’s 6:05 p.m. game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citizens Bank Park. The on-field celebration will kick off at 5:30 p.m. with a special ceremony that recognizes all active members, veterans and military families for their service to the country during this Armed Forces Day event.

Throughout the game, the Phillies and Toyota will also be highlighting the important work of Team Foster, whose mission is “No Hero Left Behind.” Team Foster is an incredible resource for veterans, raising money to obtain, uniquely train and provide service dogs to injured and disabled veterans at no cost.

“Toyota and the Tri-State Toyota Dealers are honored to join the Phillies once again as we proudly salute the men and women who bravely serve our country. We also greatly appreciate the work of Team Foster, which provided us with the opportunity to surprise and honor local retired U.S. Navy veteran Matt Connolly with the opportunity to be a special part of this Saturday’s game,” said Paul Muller, President of the Tri-State Toyota Dealers Association. “Toyota is committed to honoring our nation’s active and retired military service members, including Toyota’s ongoing support of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Hiring Our Heroes program, helping veterans and their families assimilate back into civilian life.”

“Saturday’s game is dedicated to our military heroes, past and present, as well as their families,” said Phillies Vice President of Partnership Sales & Corporate Marketing Jackie Cuddeback. “We have so much gratitude for the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our freedom. It is our honor to join Toyota to host this very special ‘Salute to Service’ as we tip our caps to those who wear the uniforms of our country.”

On this day, players and on-field personnel will wear camouflage-designed caps, as well as matching camo socks. The game will also include commemorative Armed Forces Day base jewels.

Opening ceremonies will feature on-field introductions of veterans from each conflict: Albert Teplitsky, John Walmsley, Frank Cupp and Paul Lynn from WWII, Jeffrey Knapp and Amaury Darocha from the Vietnam conflict, Daniel Kalai from the Korean War, SMSAT Stephen Mee from the Gulf War. Also being honored: DAG-VA Maureen Weigl, Brian McGinty, who served in the United States Air Force as a linguist for 11 years, and Marine Cpl. Joseph T. Erbrick III, who returned home for a short stay after a recent deployment to Afghanistan.

Other highlights include an All-Service Honor Guard and a special performance of the national anthem by the 553rd Air Force Band of the Northeast, whose Brass Band will also be roaming throughout Ashburn Alley.

Veterans representing Team Foster will participate in pregame events as well. Taking the mound for the ceremonial first pitch honors will be Matt Connolly, former United States Navy, Petty Officer 2nd Class. Connolly was surprised with a personal invitation to throw the first pitch by Toyota and the Phillies while attending his son’s Little League baseball game last week.

In addition, 1SG Arthur “Sonny” Wimberly, who is a Vietnam-era Army veteran, para-athlete and Phillies fan, will lead the ballpark in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Wimberly’s service dog, Juno, was provided to him by Team Foster; Wimberly is also an advocate for fellow veterans.

Adding to the night will be the recognition of decorated Major General Rodney L. Faulk, Commanding General for the 99th Readiness Division, as he takes the field for a Toyota Base Change at the end of the third inning. Faulk’s military awards include the Bronze Star Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal and the Army Achievement Medal, among others.

Another Toyota Base Change will take place at the end of the sixth inning, with Team Foster member SGT Gillian Barrie, US Army National Guard, having the honors.

Capping off the night will be a special performance of “God Bless America” by a vocal trio from the 553rd Air Force Band of the Northeast in the middle of the seventh inning.

As part of the event, Toyota will host nearly two dozen military members from Team Foster in their suite for that night’s game. The Phillies social media accounts will also pay tribute to the military throughout the evening.

More highlights include an exclusive Theme Night Ticket offer in honor of the night, and the first 1,000 fans to purchase tickets for this event will receive a voucher for a Phillies Salute to Service Members camo hat.

For more information, visit or follow @Phillies on social media.