The Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets is holding a raffle to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project in which the winner will have the opportunity to fire the corps' cannon during an upcoming football game.

The shot heard around the world may have taken place in the once small community of Lexington, Mass., but for every member of Hokie Nation there is a louder thunder which makes hearts race: Skipper, the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets cannon. 

Operated by an elite crew of no more than 15 cadets, the cannon is a symbol of family, tradition, and Hokie pride. At the beginning of every game and at every Hokie score, the rumble of the nearly 1,000 pound cannon can be heard throughout the Blacksburg community and for one special Hokie that rumble will be less than 10 feet away during the Virginia Tech versus UVA football game.

To this day Skipper continues the tradition outset by its founders, serving as a guide for fans, alumni, and all of Hokie nation. However this fall, the Skipper Crew is giving a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to the raffle winner to become a part of that heritage. As a fundraiser, the crew will be selling raffle tickets for $1 on the Drillfield from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Nov. 13 and 14, and outside Sharkey's Restaurant in downtown Blacksburg, Va., from noon to 5 p.m. on Nov. 23. The winner of the raffle will be drawn by the gun captain after the raffle ends on Nov. 23 and notified the same evening.

The winner of the raffle will spend a day as a member of the cannon crew for the football game with all the perks of a junior-level cadet: escorting the cannon across campus, observing pre-game from the field, and firing the cannon. The winner can choose to stay with the crew on the practice field during the game, or may re-enter the stadium after pre-game if they have purchased their own ticket. 

In echo of the university motto Ut Prosim (That I May Serve) and the Corps of Cadets commitment to the U.S. military and focus on serving others, the crew will donate 75 percent of all proceeds to the Wounded Warrior Project. The remaining money raised will go toward crew expenses. 

Written by the Skipper Crew Gun Captain and Cadet John Turbyfill of Ferrum, Va., a junior majoring in chemistry and biochemistry in the College of Science, who is a member of the Air Force ROTC program.

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