Spanos family to match Hurricane relief donations

The Alex Spanos family and the San Diego Chargers are asking fans to join them to help the American Red Cross rebuild communities and save lives in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

The American Red Cross will be collecting donations at the Chargers' home opener against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, Sept. 11 at Qualcomm Stadium. The Spanos' will match all contributions to the American Red Cross up to $150,000 made by fans attending the game.

"It's hard to comprehend the enormity of this disaster," said team president Dean Spanos. "There are hundreds of thousands of people homeless. This is a time to make a difference and help people get back on their feet."

Charger fans have a tradition of generosity following natural disasters. Earlier this year, the Spanos' pledged $150,000 to aid the tsunami victims of South Asia and with Charger fans, contributed an additional $46,000 to the relief fund. In 2003, the Spanos' donated $1 million to the San Diego wildfires relief fund and matched an additional $60,000 contributed by fans.

"This is the largest disaster the Red Cross has responded to in its 125 years," said local Red Cross Chapter CEO Ronne Froman. "We need any and all help. This needs to be a team effort to help with the massive amount of care needed. We are grateful the Chargers and their fans are willing to help us with our life-saving efforts."

Fans can make contributions at the gates as they enter the stadium as well as throughout the game. All donations are tax deductible. By making a financial gift to Hurricane 2005 Relief, the Red Cross can help provide shelter, food, counseling, and other assistance to those in need.

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