Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger started The Ben Roethlisberger Foundation to support police and fire departments with a particular emphasis on support for K-9 units and service dogs.
Earlier this year, the Foundation provided a new K-9 for Officer Phil Lerza and the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police after the death of K-9 Officer Rocco. Rocco was stabbed while helping Lerza make an arrest. The 8-year-old German shepherd had been a member of the police bureau since 2008. The man charged in the K-9’s death faces a maximum of seven years in prison. Roethlisberger said, “Rocco can never be replaced, but we only hope to help with the healing process and to provide Officer Lerza with another loyal partner.”