The Los Angeles Chargers – a trailblazer among sports teams for promoting early detection and the first NFL team in the nation to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month by offering free mammograms to the community – will continue the organization's advocacy for cancer risk reduction this Monday when they face the Dallas Cowboys on ESPN's Monday Night Football. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:15 p.m. PT at SoFi Stadium.
Fans attending the game will receive pink ribbons upon entry from members of the Zeta Tau Alpha Fraternity (ZTA) of women – an organization that coordinates and participates in special events throughout October to raise funds for breast cancer education while increasing awareness about the importance of early detection.
While the Crucial Catch program encompasses all types of cancer, inside the stadium the team's efforts will focus on breast cancer awareness – a cause deeply personal to Susie Spanos, wife of Chargers Chairman of the Board and Controlling Owner Dean Spanos, who is herself a breast cancer survivor and champion for early detection.
Unique to Monday night, fans will have the opportunity to sign messages to their loved ones affected by cancer on the team's trademark, oversized "Bolt Up" letters on the main concourse while the game's presenting sponsor Hoag Health Systems will distribute pink flags to the first 50,000 fans entering the stadium. Additionally, specialty Crucial Catch merchandise and apparel will be available for purchase in the team store.
Down on the field, fans will notice coaches and players in team-issued Crucial Catch branding / gameday apparel featuring a multi-colored logo representing all cancers. NFL Crucial Catch game elements include:
• Game balls with the Crucial Catch logo used for every down
• Multi-colored equipment for players including helmet decals, captains' patches, and quarterback towels
• Multi-colored ribbon pins for coaches and teams
• Caps and pins for game officials
• On-field multi-colored ribbon stencils and Crucial Catch wall banners
• Multi-colored goal post padding in end zones
Prior to kickoff, the national anthem will be performed by renowned R&B singer and breast cancer survivor Tarsha Rodgers. Rodgers will be joined by 100 Zeta Tau Alphas and 50 cancer survivors.
At halftime, 50 cancer survivors, 20 Hoag Cancer Physicians and 100 Zeta Tau Alphas will be on the field for a special halftime performance by rising pop star and cancer survivor *Caly Bevier, *Simon Cowell's first-ever Golden Buzzer recipient on America's Got Talent (AGT). In the time since she first auditioned for AGT in 2016, Bevier has released 10 singles and amassed 2.5 million streams on Spotify.
Leading up to the game, Susie Spanos joined Pro Bowl safety Derwin James, Jr., linebacker Nick Niemann and the Hoag Family Cancer Institute to host a mindfulness session tailored to uplift breast cancer patients and survivors. The event featured a mindfulness and meditation experience led by Joe "Big Joe" Fauria, a former NFL player and UCLA alumnus, as well as puppies from Wallis Annenberg PetSpace – a unique community space that facilitates pet adoptions, hosts community events and offers learning opportunities designed to promote and strengthen the human-animal bond.
For the last 15 years, the NFL has contributed more than $27 million to the American Cancer Society through sales of Crucial Catch branded merchandise, NFL Auction items, and general fundraising. Crucial Catch empowers fans to take their health into their own hands by getting screened for cancer, educated on the importance of early detection, and discovering ways to reduce their cancer risk.
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