Heroes Among Us - October/November 2017

The Heroes Among Us award is a program of the Boston Celtics, presented by the Mass State Lottery.

Heroes Among Us

November 30, 2017

Gosnell Family

46 year old Kevin Gosnell didn’t feel right while on a jog in 2014.  Then he struggled getting out of the water after a swim.  Six months later, Kevin was diagnosed with an aggressive form of ALS.

After realizing there were few treatment options, he set out to find and fund a cure by launching an organization called ALS ONE. Tragically Kevin passed away in 2016, but his vision continues as the organization has assembled an all star team of doctors and researchers and raised over $7 Million to fight the disease!

For their commitment to finding a cure for ALS, please join us in celebrating the Gosnell family as tonight’s Heroes Among Us!

Heroes Among Us

November 27, 2017

Michelle Visser

As a therapist serving at-risk families in 2014, Michelle Visser saw the struggles young parents were dealing with as they provided for their kids.

After realizing that food stamps could not be used on necessities like diapers, Michelle started visiting local businesses and putting collection boxes on site.  Mounds of donations piled up so Michelle launched the non-profit, Diaper Circle, to formalize the initiative.  Amazingly, they now have 12 drop-off sites and have distributed over 140,000 diapers throughout Greater Boston!

For her incredible commitment to helping families in need, please join us in recognizing Michelle Visser as tonight’s Hero Among Us!

Heroes Among Us

November 24, 2017

Dot Hayes

When Dot Hayes first met her adopted son Jason in 1988, the 3-year old had already faced numerous obstacles. Born with alcohol and drugs in his system, Jason suffered from a number of developmental challenges from infancy through adolescence.

After tragically passing away at the age of 14, Jason’s memory lives on through a foundation created in his name. Determined to help enrich the lives of children who have experienced trauma, the Jason Hayes Foundation has awarded over $20,000 in educational scholarships, funded over 40 local organizations and helped hundreds of families navigate life.

For their commitment to improving the lives of kids, please join us in recognizing Dot Hayes and the Jason Hayes Foundation!

Heroes Among Us

November 16, 2017

Nicole Baltzer

Last year, Nicole Baltzer stumbled across a newspaper article that would change her life forever.

A local neighborhood mom with Lupus was making a desperate plea for an organ donor as the disease began to attack her kidneys, causing her health to quickly decline. As a mother herself Nicole knew she had to help, so she decided to get a blood test in hopes of becoming her donor. Incredibly, Nicole turned out to be a perfect match and this past February she selflessly donated her kidney to a complete stranger!

For her selfless sacrifice, please join the Celtics in celebrating tonight’s Hero Among Us, Nicole Baltzer!

Heroes Among Us

November 12, 2017

Dawn Oates

Brookline native Dawn Oates has dedicated her life to helping disabled children have fun.

When her daughter Harper was born with a severe disability, she quickly learned the challenges children with special needs face to engage in meaningful play. Determined to ensure local parks and recreation accommodate kids of all abilities, Dawn founded The Play Brigade, a nonprofit committed to inclusive play. The Play Brigade has raised thousands of dollars to fund inclusive play structures in local parks and last month hosted the first ever all inclusive road race for athletes of all abilities.

For her inspiration efforts to show us the meaning of inclusion, please join the Celtics in celebrating Hero Among Us, Dawn Oates!

Heroes Among Us

November 10, 2017

Aurel E. Stuart

New Hampshire native Aurel Stuart has devoted his life to protecting our country.

Enlisting in the National Guard in 1935 Aurel quickly climbed the ranks becoming a lead bomber in World War II. On June 6, 1944 otherwise known as “D-Day”, Aurel flew his B-24 Liberator less than 10,000 feet above the coast of France providing critical support to Allied Forces as they stormed the beaches of Normandy. Throughout his career Aurel completed more than 31 missions across 35 years of decorated service.

In honor of Seats for Soldiers Night and celebration of his 100th birthday, please join the Celtics in celebrating Hero Among Us, Aurel Stuart!

Heroes Among Us

November 8, 2017

Kevin Racicot

Bridgewater native Corporal Kevin Racicot has dedicated his life to protecting our freedom.

Serving his second combat tour in Afghanistan in 2011, Kevin was leading a squadron of over 50 marines through a recovery operation when his leg was severely injured by an IDF blast. Against all odds, Kevin made a full recovery and was awarded a Purple Heart for his heroic actions. Celebrating his 28th birthday today, Kevin is actively involved in military transition programs as he pursues a Bachelor’s degree from Northeastern University!

For his inspirational efforts while serving our country, please join the Celtics in celebrating Hero Among Us, Corporal Kevin Racicot!

Heroes Among Us

November 1, 2017

Stephanie Frazier Grimm

Rhode Island native Stephanie Frazier Grimm knows how to bring joy to those who need it most.

During a hospital visit to see her friend’s child who was born prematurely, Stephanie learned most children in hospitals do not celebrate their birthdays because the focus is on their healthcare. Believing every child deserves a birthday celebration, Stephanie used her background in event planning to launch The Confetti Foundation, a nonprofit organization delivering birthday party supplies to children in hospitals nationwide. Incredibly, since 2014 the Confetti Foundation has donated more than 3,000 birthday boxes to 160 children’s hospitals!

For bringing sick children happiness in a box, please join the Celtics in celebrating Hero Among Us, Stephanie Frazier Grimm!

Heroes Among Us

October 30, 2017

Tom Kelley

Boston native and Medal of Honor recipient Tom Kelley has dedicated his life to protecting our country.

While serving in the Navy during the Vietnam War, Commander Kelley was leading a mission when one of his boats suffered a mechanical failure and his convoy came under attack. Despite suffering a head wound that resulted in the loss of his eye, Kelley managed to lead his fleet to safety. Amazingly, after receiving a Medal of Honor, Commander Kelley remained in the military and served an additional 21 years as a Navy officer!

For his bravery and commitment to our country, please join the Celtics in celebrating Hero Among Us, Tom Kelley!

Heroes Among Us

October 24, 2017

John Downs

For the past four years, Winchester native John Downs has seen an opportunity to use Halloween displays to give back to his community.

A graduate of UNH with a degree in studio art, John combines his love of art and engineering to create elaborate displays as part of his Halloween Helping Kids fundraiser. Attracting viewers from all over New England, visitors can make donations which benefit Boston Children’s Hospital. Amazingly, since 2013 John’s displays have raised more than $28,000 to directly support medical care for patients at Children’s Hospital!

For his creative efforts to help children in need, please join the Celtics in honoring Hero Among Us, John Downs!