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We are excited to announce our Recognition Celebration!

Exclusive: Early Bird 8/11-9/22 $123

The Board of Shield 23 Foundation is excited to announce that tickets are now available for purchase for the Recognition Celebration being held on Thursday November 9th, 2023 (doors open at 5:30).

Please join us for an evening of Cocktails, Heavy Appetizers, Musical Entertainment by the band Hillbilly Rockstarz, and Fundraising (Auction and Raffles) in support of our Mission to raise funds for and gift funds to Firefighters battling cancer and the families that stand beside them.

The Recognition Celebration will be an uplifting Celebration of support for our Gifting Recipients’ and their families’ battle against cancer, and Recognition of their fire department brothers and sisters and Shield 23 Foundation supporters. A special fire service honor guard ceremony will remember those we’ve lost to cancer but will never forget.

We look forward to seeing you at this unique Recognition and Celebration event that will mix respect, honor, and encouragement for our hometown heroes with socializing, great food and drink, and energizing music, along with giving to a great cause!

Dress code: Dressy Casual.

Our Story

Shield 23 Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) was formed in March 2018 by family and friends in memory of 20-year Gurnee (Illinois) Fire Department Firefighter/Paramedic and AFFI Honor Guard Member Russell S. Constantino who passed away on November 9, 2009 at age 46 from job related brain cancer.

Russ’ surviving spouse Shenan shares the story of the man who inspired the Foundation in the touching video below courtesy of sponsor Mission BBQ.

Click to see news on our recent gifting’s

— Did
you know?


of career firefighter deaths

Cancer has caused 61% of career firefighter line-of-duty deaths since 2002.

(IAFF data 1.1.2002 to 3.31.2017)

higher risk of being diagnosed with cancer

Firefighters have a 9% higher risk of being diagnosed with cancer and a 14% higher risk of dying from cancer than the general U.S. population.

(Firefighter Cancer Support Network/NIOSH study results)

— how
we help

Financial Assistance

The Foundation serves to honor the legacy of Russ by defraying the costs of treatment and care for firefighters battling cancer and the families standing by their side.

Peer Support

Is one of your fellow brother or sister firefighters battling cancer? Are you the loved one or friend of a firefighter with cancer?

Increase Awareness

Shield 23 Foundation aims to increase public awareness of the impact of job-related cancer in the fire service and encourage education and cancer risk prevention practices within the fire service.

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you can help

Your support grants us the ability to continue our Mission of supporting firefighters battling cancer and the families standing by their side. Help alleviate the financial stressors incurred, lessen worries about bills, ease limits and changes to daily life, and strengthen the focus of the family on caring for their firefighter.