ATHENS — Ohio University is set to host a charity hockey game in March with proceeds to fund the memorial scholarship foundation created in the wake of Nelsonville Police Officer Scott Dawley’s death.
The First Responder Face-Off Foundation, a charitable organization that provides resources to first responders across Central Ohio, has chosen Athens as the site for their annual hockey match organized through their Hockey Helping Heroes program.
The program, designed to showcase First Responder hockey and bring awareness to the various charity and benefit games that public safety hockey teams across the state hold each year, has previously played matches in Toledo, Columbus and Cincinnati.
This year, members of the OU Bobcat Alumni Hockey team will face off against the Columbus Police and Fire Hockey team on Sunday, March 27 at 1 p.m. at Bird Arena.
“Hockey is a sport that tends to bring people together in a fun yet competitive environment,” said said Don Zender, director of the First Responder Face-Off Foundation. “When our police & fire teams partner with institutions such as Ohio University and the Bobcats, were able to bring a message of unity and hope through hockey to a community that is still learning to heal”.
Nelsonville Police Office Scott Dawley was killed in a three-vehicle crash in early August while responding to a shots fired call in Nelsonville. He left behind a wife, Marisa, and seven children as well as a variety of friends and family. Hundreds of law enforcement officers from across the state traveled to see him laid to rest on Aug. 11, 2021.
Dawley was an avid hockey fan in life, according to a press release from the organization, and proceeds from ticket sales will be used to establish the Officer Scott R. Dawley Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship will help cement Dawley’s legacy by providing funds to graduating high school students in southeastern Ohio who wish to pursue careers in public safety.
“Any time we lose an officer, there is a tremendous sense of loss within a community,” said Zender. “When that tragedy happens in a smaller community, that impact is deeply felt.”
Tickets for the event are now available online at www.hockeyhelpingheroes.org at a cost of $6 for children aged 3 to 12 and $10 for adults. Seating will be general admission so first come, first serve.
Those not wishing to attend but would still like to support can donate their time to the cause by signing up at the foundations website or by purchasing advertising in the game day program. Businesses can also make donations for the raffle to be held during the game. Forms for advertising and donations can be found on their website, www. firstresponderfaceoff.com.