Dwyane Wade has always been a pillar of his community down in Southern Florida. So when the Cavs sent him back to Miami at the trade deadline in February, he wasted no time making his presence felt in ways that extend well beyond the basketball court.
Wade’s return to the franchise where he spent the best years of his career, unfortunately, coincided with a brutal tragedy that has become all too familiar in American life when a gunman entered Majory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, killing 17 students and injuring dozens of others.
Wade later made a surprise visit to the high school to help lift the students’ spirits, and just a few weeks afterward, he and his wife, actress Gabrielle Union, pledged $200,000 to support the “March For Our Lives” events that took place across the country in an effort to stop gun violence.
The NBA has reportedly taken notice of Wade’s humanitarian initiatives and awarded him with the NBA Cares Community Assist Award for the month of March. Via Fox Sports Florida:
“I’m proud to represent South Florida and the Miami HEAT in receiving this Community Assist Award,” said Wade. “I’m thankful.”
Before the HEAT’s home game against the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight, NBA Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations Kiki VanDeWeghe, two-time Community Assist Award winner Alonzo Mourning, and Udonis Haslem will present the award to Wade during an oncourt ceremony. In addition, Kaiser Permanente and the NBA will donate $10,000 to the Dwyane Wade Family Foundation.
The Heat will cap the season with a two-game home stretch starting on Monday against the Thunder and culminating with their final game against the Raptors on Wednesday. They currently hold the No. 6 seed in the East, which would give them a first-round matchup against the streaking Sixers when the playoffs start next weekend.