The annual Patriots Premiere event is the Patriots Foundation signature event, celebrating the work, impact and reach of the foundation throughout the year. With the gala on Aug. 31 and after a long, challenging year and a half, the Patriots Foundation turned the work of local community heroes into focus.
More than 70 frontline workers were invited to the event and given the welcome they deserve. After Patriots players made their entrance onto the Gillette Stadium field, the nurses, firefighters, teachers, volunteers, delivery drivers and more were given a standing ovation.
At the beginning of the program, Robert Kraft addressed the crowd,
"Typically the stars of tonight are the Patriots players, our sports heroes if you will, but after 18 months battling a global pandemic, we wanted to start by recognizing a few other heroes," he said. "The frontline community heroes who tirelessly and selflessly provided the services necessary to get us through this."
Among those recognized was Truro firefighter Robert Wescott. He said it was an honor to be there as part of the community heroes, especially after what the last year has put them through.
"The year was tough," Wescott said. "We took it head on. We paid attention to the protocols and what the state and CDC said to do. We tried to make everyone feel as safe as they could. A lot of my coworkers have families, so they were worried about going home and spreading the virus. A lot of them had to socially distance from their loved ones just to make sure they were keeping everyone safe."
A night like Tuesday with recognition from the Patriots and companies like Zudy, who sponsored his seat at the event, was a reminder that his and the other frontline workers' efforts didn't go unnoticed.
"It was truly phenomenal to see the Patriots look back on the community and honor them because I spent my whole life watching football with my family and friends," Wescott said. "I always looked up tot he Krafts and the Patriots and strive to be better like them. You see them grow year in and year out, and we need to grow like them. It was really nice to see that they actually pay attention to the community and the fan base."