CORVALLIS, OR (KPTV) - A former Oregon State Beaver in the NBA hasn't forgotten his roots and is giving back to people in need in Oregon.
Drew Eubanks, of the San Antonio Spurs, says his family was affected by devastating wildfires in the state. That's why he says he wants to help others get back on their feet.
While Eubanks lives in San Antonio after completing his second season with the Spurs, the former Beaver and Reynolds Raiders alum left his heart and family in Oregon.
“My fiance’s parents had to evacuate and it hit pretty close to home to me, being in Oregon City then back in 2017 when the Eagle Creek fires were happening, that was near my house in Troutdale and I couldn’t do anything about it, or I couldn’t do as much as I can now,” Eubanks said.
Eubanks, now an NBA pro, is using his standing in life to give back to displaced families in need after watching his own loved ones deal with evacuations from the wildfires that have ravaged part of Oregon.
“It was a rough couple of days for my fiancée because she was obviously worried about her family," Eubanks said. "A mile away, they were in Phase 3, and where her parents were at was in Phase 2, but it was just so bad from the smoke and they had to wear masks from inside their house because the smoke was so bad and they just wanted to get out before they couldn’t get out anymore or when it wouldn’t have been an option.”
Eubanks' family is safe, and now many others can receive meals from the Oregon Food Bank, as Eubanks teamed up with Portland Gear on their Heart For Oregon fundraiser.
“I think now we are at almost $33,000, 31,000 raised, which is crazy," Marcus Harvey, of Portland Gear, said. "I have already made some of those deposits to the food bank so they can start getting the food out and into the communities.”
All proceeds from each Heart For Oregon shirt and sticker that Harvey's company prints and sells goes directly to the cause, as one t-shirt equals 60 meals.
“I would hope that this would never have to happen and we would never have to use a fundraiser like this, but when they do, it’s on us and in our community to come together and do stuff, so we are appreciative of Drew and hope that all of the money can be felt across the state of Oregon,” Harvey said.
Shirt and sticker pre-orders are available online here.
“I feel like it is important to give back to the place that made you who you are and I feel like Oregon made me who I am and made me appreciate nature, made me appreciate being outside, to have forests and have all of the nature burn, it’s not good," Eubanks said. "Oregon is a very green and beautiful place and Oregon is the place that made me who I am and I want to give back to my community in any way possible now that I have this platform."
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