Daily News

Thunderbirds, Partners, Donate $8,000 to Family of Fallen Firefighter

SPRINGFIELD — Springfield Thunderbirds President Nathan Costa announced recently that through combined efforts at two recent Thunderbird games, the team, the Springfield Fire Department, and the Springfield Association of Firefighters Local 648 were able to raise $8,030 in donations to the family of fallen Worcester Fire Lieutenant Jason Menard.

Menard, 39, died Nov. 13 after being trapped in a four-alarm fire on Stockholm Street in Worcester. According to officials, Menard’s death came moments after he was able to bring two of his other crew members to safety as the group searched for a baby and resident still in the building. Menard left behind a wife of 16 years and three children.

“We were humbled and overwhelmed with the support shown by Thunderbirds fans,” said Costa. “We were glad be able to provide an outlet for the Springfield Fire Department and the Springfield Association of Firefighters Local 648 to honor their fallen brother in Worcester and assist his family in their time of tremendous grief.”

Of the total donation, more than $5,000 was generated via donations directly to Springfield Fire Department officials or Springfield Association of Firefighters Local 648, who encouraged fans to “fill the boot” on games played Friday and Saturday. The remaining funds were generated via sales of 50-50 raffle tickets both online and in-arena.