Running back Christian McCaffrey has been named the Carolina Panthers’ 2021 nominee for the Salute to Service Award, presented by USAA.
The award, which is now in its 11th year, recognizes a league member who “demonstrates an exemplary commitment to honoring and supporting the military community.” McCaffrey’s outreach efforts have been a particularly personal mission for him throughout his career.
“I’ve always had a huge respect for the military,” McCaffrey said. “I have a little bit of military background on my dad’s side, so growing up it’s just some of the values instilled in me at a young age. Without the men and women who defend our country, I wouldn’t be able to play the game that I love so much.”
Carolina’s star rusher has had his hand in multiple projects—having teamed with USO of North Carolina, Veterans Bridge Home, USAA and Lowe’s for numerous military initiatives. He’s also established, as of this year, a partnership with REBOOT Recovery in a program to help support troops and their families in dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
“My own football season in 2020 taught me some lessons about resilience, but that hardly compares to what these heroes face and must grapple with when they come home and make their comeback,” he said. “With 22 and Troops, we can show our service men and women and their families that we are their community, here to support them. And together with REBOOT, we can offer tools and assistance from others who have walked through this trauma themselves.”
Finalists for the Salute to Service Award will be announced in January.
For more on the Christian McCaffrey Foundation and 22 and Troops, visit the link here.