TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning honored Andre Kirwan as the 22nd Lightning Community Hero of the year during the first period of tonight's game against the New York Islanders. Kirwan, who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, will donate the money to Warrick Dunn Charities, Rebuilding Together Tampa Bay, Family Network on Disabilities, Jesuit High School and Morningstar Church.
Eric Brewer (left) joined Lightning owner Jeff Vinik (right) to present Andre Kirwan with a check for $50,000.
Kirwan has lived what most would consider a fulfilling and successful life. He was the student body president at Jesuit High School, a graduate of Stanford University where he lettered in football all four years he was there, and won a Grey Cup as a starting wide receiver for the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. However, his most significant accomplishment has been the founding of the No Strings Attached homeless ministry.
No Strings Attached homeless ministry was started in 2007 by Kirwan and four other volunteers. The ministry provided 2,500 clothing items and other essentials to Tampa area homeless on Thanksgiving and Christmas of 2007. Since then, Kirwan has grown the ministry to over 50 volunteers who distribute over 25,000 essential items Tampa area homeless each Thanksgiving and Christmas.