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Steelers quarterback donates money to Maryland K-9 units

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Posted at 12:07 PM, Nov 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-01 12:07:07-04

Even though the Ravens and Steelers are football rivals, it doesn't mean they can't help each other off the field. 

On Thursday, Pittsburgh's Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger announced his foundation will be giving grants to two Maryland law enforcement agencies for their K-9 programs. Both the Annapolis Police Department and the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office will be receiving the grants. 

The Annapolis Police Department says they will use the grant to purchase needed safety equipment for their K-9 unit, while the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office plans to use the funds to replace a recently retired dog.

“This grant will be used to purchase two K-9 vests and an alarm system for a K-9 vehicle. These items are potentially lifesaving for our hardworking four-legged K-9 officers," said Annapolis Chief of Police Scott Baker. "We can’t thank the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation enough for this generous grant.”

For each regular season away game for the Steelers, Roethlisberger's foundation is giving away grants to certain K-9 units in their opponent's community. 

The Ben Roethlisberger Foundation has distributed more than $170,000 in grants to K-9 units around the country during the 2017 NFL season and has given in excess of $1.92 million since 2007.

Montgomery County Sheriff Darren M. Popkin stated, “As the Sheriff in Montgomery County, Maryland, it is my honor to acknowledge the generosity of the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation for this grant to our K-9 unit. The Roethlisberger Foundation grant will allow the Sheriff’s Office to continue to train specialized K-9 teams for the Sheriff’s Office and other affiliated law enforcement agencies in our region.”

In commenting on why the mission of the foundation is so important to him, Roethlisberger said, “We’re very fortunate to be in the position that we are able to help these K-9 units. The work that is performed by the dogs and their handlers, as well as the bond that is formed, is incredible. We’re just thrilled to do our small part.”