Steve Lombardozzi watched as Hurricane Sandy battered the Northeast and worried about friends and teammates he had met in the Nationals minor leagues that were from that area. He fired off text messages and made phone calls to check in, but unlike other dreadful events he had seen on TV and read about in the news, this one struck a chord in the Nationals rookie second baseman-outfielder.
“When you have people that you know, you’re checking on them to see how they’re doing,” he said. “But it’s even bigger picture than that. That shouldn’t have to motivate you.”
The Columbia native’s father, Steve Sr., a former major leaguer and head baseball coach at Good Counsel High School, asked him if he was interested in collecting supplies and taking them to the hard-hit areas and handing out the goods together. “And then we thought about more and try to make a bigger impact so we called the Nationals and they were right in the middle of trying to figure something out also,” Steve Jr. said. “It was great timing.”
The Lombardozzi family, along with the help of the Nationals, are asking for donations of needed supplies until Sunday. JK Moving will supply a 35-foot truck and a driver will deliver the supplies to the Community Food Bank of New Jersey in Hillside, N.J., on Tuesday, with the Lombardozzi and his parents following right behind it.
“I’m excited,” he said. “I really haven’t done something like this before. I hope people really step up and it’s a good turnout and we get a lot of stuff and we can go make an impact.
Here are the places donations can be dropped off, according to the Nationals:
–Team store at Nationals Park Center Field Gate at Half & N Street, SE, Washington, D.C. (Tuesday, Nov. 13 to Friday, Nov. 16: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.)
–Team store at Tysons Corner at 1961 Chain Bridge Rd. Suite E-5U, Tysons Corner, VA (Tuesday, Nov. 13 to Saturday, Nov. 17: 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 18: 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
–Team store at Dulles Town Center at 21100 Dulles Town Circle, Suite 156 Dulles, VA (Tuesday, Nov. 13 to Saturday, Nov. 17: 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 18: 11 a.m.-7 p.m.)
–Our Lady of Good Counsel High School at 17301 Old Vic Blvd., Olney, Md. (Tuesday, Nov. 13 to Friday, Nov. 16: 8 a.m.-3 p.m. in front office; 3 p.m.-6 p.m. in Kane Center Gym lobby; Saturday, Nov. 17 & Sunday, Nov. 18: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. in gym lobby.)
Here are the items that are most in need:
–Canned foods including soups, stews, chili, tuna, peanut butter and canned milk (pop top preferred, but please avoid glass containers)
–Bottled water (one liter or smaller bottles for easier transport)
–Powdered milk, baby formula and bottles
–Personal care items including disposable diapers, soap, wipes, toilet paper, first aid kits and feminine products
–Household items including garbage bags, zip lock bags, paper plates and cups, plastic utensils, duct tape, matches, batteries, flashlights, disinfectant and cleaning materials
–Disposable charcoal grills and charcoal
–New blankets and sleeping bags