The NFL and USAA have announced 49ers general manager John Lynch as one of three finalists for the 10th Annual Salute to Service Award presented by USAA. The Salute to Service Award recipient will be recognized at NFL Honors, a primetime awards special to air nationally the Saturday before Super Bowl LV.
In addition to Lynch, AMB Sports and Entertainment CEO Steve Cannon and New England Patriots Long Snapper Joe Cardona were also named finalist for their exceptional efforts to honor and support members of the military community.
Lynch has a longstanding appreciation for the United States military stemming from his grandfather and great uncle both volunteering for the Army the day after the deadly attacks on Pearl Harbor in December 1941. Since 1998, Lynch has frequented various Air Force bases and military hospitals to personally thank those serving in the military, in Florida, Maryland and Colorado. Lynch was also the recipient of the 2006 Bart Starr Award.
Every year since 2011, he has hosted military families at the annual Lynch Christmas Party and each holiday season with the 49ers, he hosts military families and underserved youth for a holiday party and practice visit. In 2018 and 2019, Lynch welcomed more than 250 active duty troops and veterans for a VIP training camp practice experience.
In November 2017, Lynch spearheaded a visit to the USO office at the San Jose Military Entrance Processing Station to congratulate newly enlisted recruits heading off to basic training. In October 2019, Lynch welcomed a group of decorated veterans, including 5 purple heart recipients, when the 49ers played in Washington, D.C. Lynch’s commitment to supporting veteran organizations, like USO Bay Area, has driven a close partnership with the nonprofit and the 49ers, which has led to new opportunities to support the troops and their families with game tickets, Salute to Service program involvement, choosing USO Bay Area as the 50/50 raffle beneficiary for the 2019 Salute to Service game, and delivering care kits to isolated troops in partnership with USAA during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Salute to Service Award is part of the NFL and USAA’s year-round commitment to recognize and honor the military community. This season, all 32 NFL clubs nominated coaches, active and retired players, and team executives and personnel, who best demonstrated support for the military community.