Thanks to Baltimore Colts fans for supporting charitable causes

March 12, 2011

The photos posted on The Baltimore Sun's web site don't do justice to the energy and enthusiasm my teammates and I were greeted with at the Corralin' the Colts Bull and Oyster Roast on March 6. On behalf of Fourth & Goal and members of the 1975, 1976 and 1977 division champion Baltimore Colts, I want to thank the more than 700 sponsors and fans who came out to support both our organization and the Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation. We were overwhelmed by the warm reception we received.

Bert Jones spoke for all of us when he commented that Baltimore is our home. No matter where we grew up, where we went to school or where we live now, we come home to Baltimore. The special relationship we shared with the city, the state and the fans lives on.

I also want to thank the Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation and Sports Legends Museum for collaborating with us on this event. Thanks, too, to Hyatt Regency Baltimore, Air Tran Airways, Gunther Transportation, Sullivan's Restaurant, Martin's West and artist Arthur Hall for their assistance in transporting, housing and hosting us, and to Maroon P.R. for their efforts to promote the event. Most of all, I want to thank my teammates for coming in at their own expense to help raise funds for two worthy charitable organizations.

Fourth & Goal, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization founded by the Baltimore Colts alumni, has provided grants totaling nearly $200,000 to address retired players' housing, transportation and medical needs. For more information on Fourth & Goal, visit http://www.fourthandgoalunites.com or follow us on Twitter. The Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation supports both the Birthplace and Sports Legends Museum. For information on the Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation, visit http://www.baberuthmuseum.com.

Thanks to the generosity of sponsors, partners and fans, we raised a significant amount of money to assist retired NFL players in need. For those players, who have too often been overlooked, I offer my heartfelt thanks.

Bruce Laird

The writer is president of Fourth & Goal and a former player for the NFL's Baltimore Colts and San Diego Chargers football teams.

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