Warriors, family members and staff are often treated to lunch at the Warrior and Family Support Center, but rarely is lunch served by local sports superstars.
Sixteen San Antonio Spurs players, Coach Gregg “Pop” Popovich and other members of the Spurs organization filed off a bus Oct. 21 to serve lunch, sign autographs and mingle with warriors and their families. This was their first visit to the WFSC. From there they made their way to the Center for the Intrepid to visit with wounded service members and play wheelchair basketball.
“It’s great to come out and see the guys and give them a little bit of support and see some smiles and put hands on people. It’s just really nice to be here,” said veteran player Tim Duncan.
Manu Ginobili said visiting warriors was a team activity he really enjoyed.
“We appreciate coming here and talking to the guys. It’s a great experience and at the same time we’re helping them have a better day,” Ginobili said. “Many of them watch us on TV and they enjoy what we do, so we come here to say hi and share some experiences and have a good time.”
Popovich, an Air Force veteran, thinks community activities are important for his team, especially supporting military members.
“Any time we can honor these men and women who have sacrificed so much, it’s the least that we can do. It’s a great way for all of us to understand how fortunate we are, so it’s a win-win for everybody,” said Popovich, who has coached the team to five NBA championships.
“They enjoy seeing the players and the players appreciate what they have done, and what they have to go through here. It’s pretty incredible; I think it teaches the players a lot about perseverance and coming back from diversity,” Popovich said.
“One of the most impressive things about the whole Spurs team is their demonstration of teamwork, during all of their games and all of their actions in the city,” said Brooke Army Medical Center Commander Col. Evan Renz.
As a leader, Renz has a great appreciation for other leaders.
“When I spoke to Coach Popovich I thanked him for the excellent example of leadership that he gives, not just on the basketball court but throughout the community,” Renz said. “It inspires young people to see that kind of teamwork. He creates a better community and we owe a great debt to Coach Popovich for what he brings to the San Antonio area.”
For photos of the event, please visit http://www.bamc.amedd.army.mil/articles/2015/san-antonio-spurs-spend-time-with-warriors.asp
Reprinted with permission
Story by Lori Newman, BAMC Public Affairs
Originally published October 23, 2015