SAN FRANCISCO — In what has become a midseason tradition for the San Francisco Giants, the team through its Giants Community Fund in partnership with SBC/Nortel Networks hosted the 11th annual Until There’s a Cure Day.
The event is an effort to raise both awareness of HIV/AIDS and funds for research and treatment for the disease.
Until There’s a Cure Day has generated more than $1 million to combat HIV/AIDS. Last year, the fund-raiser brought in more than $80,000 through a raffle and sales of AIDS ribbons and T-shirts.
This year, the Giants marked Until There’s a Cure Day with pregame appearances by local community activists, team executive vice president Larry Baer and center fielder Marquis Grissom, who has been a dedicated fund-raiser for the fight against AIDS since losing his sister to the disease.
“I fervently hope that over the next 10 years this day will no longer be needed,” Baer said. “But if it is, we will be here.”
After the speeches were over, the Giants players — all with red ribbons on their uniforms — along with the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks, joined the 600 community volunteers forming a human red ribbon in center field for the national anthem. Each volunteer carried a red balloon which was released into the sky as the group singing the anthem, the cast of “Beach Blanket Babylon,” hit the final notes of “and the home of the braaaaaave.”
As part of the pregame ceremonies for Sunday’s event, the Giants Community Fund presented grant checks for $10,000 each to five Bay Area organizations devoted to helping those affected by HIV/AIDS: Project Open Hand; Diablo Valley AIDS Center; Marin AIDS Project; Sunburst Projects; and New Leaf: Services for Our Community. Those five organizations provide such services as delivering healthy meals to HIV/AIDS patients, caring for children whose families are touched by the disease and providing mental health care and counseling to AIDS patients.
Tony Kuttner is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.