HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. --
The Chicago Slaughter played host to the Marines during the Chicago Slaughter-Wisconsin Wolfpack Continental Indoor Football League game at the Sears Centre here Saturday in support of Marine Week Chicago.
Marine Week Chicago, a week-long event which provided an opportunity for Chicago citizens to meet the men and women of the Marine Corps and learn about its history, traditions and value to the nation.
Along with the color guard and honorary first pass, the Chicago Slaughter helped celebrate Marine Week Chicago by teaming up with the Veterans Ticket Foundation to provide 200 tickets to veterans, active-duty service members and their families.
Marines from Recruiting Substation Schaumburg, Marine Corps Recruiting Station Chicago, presented the American colors during the national anthem, and Lt. Col. Sidney McGraw, executive officer of Marine Air Control Group 48, displayed his arm strength before thousands of Slaughter fans in attendance with the honorary first pass to Chicago Slaughter wide receiver Dontrell Jackson.
“I was thrilled. I got the same tingles that I had when I was playing football in my younger days,” said McGraw, 45, who played college football at Lees-McRae College at Banner Elk, N.C.
The Marine presence at the Slaughter game was one of the final events of Marine Week Chicago, which saw Marines stage vehicles and weaponry, and provide physical fitness and martial arts demonstrations throughout the Chicagoland area, including Soldier Field, Arlington Park and Navy Pier.
“It’s been awesome all week, and tonight is no different,” said McGraw, whose Great Lakes, Ill.-based reserve unit served as the command element of Marine Week Chicago. “Chicago is a huge sports city, and the Marines are getting the same reception here as they would get anywhere else. It’s been a positive experience for everybody.”