UArizona Strengthens Support for Local Vets Through Operation Hat Trick

three students wearing military-themed merchandise

(L-R) UArizona students Victor Chiquete, Jaye Ferrone and Kathy Nunez model Operation Hat Trick merchandise.

The University of Arizona is again partnering with the national nonprofit Operation Hat Trick to support military service members and veterans through the sale of military-themed merchandise. The partnership is now in its fourth year.

A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the merchandise, which includes UArizona hoodies, jackets, a throw blanket and socks, will benefit the Fisher House in Tucson and the University of Arizona VETS Centers. The University has raised over $40,000 for the Fisher House since the partnership began.

"We're thrilled to partner with Operation Hat Trick and the VETS Center again this year," said Alixe Holcomb, University of Arizona director of trademarks and licensing. "Military service members and veterans do so much to serve and protect our community, and it's our privilege to do our part to support them during and after their service."

Alixe Holcomb

Alixe Holcomb

Operation Hat Trick gear is available at University of Arizona BookStores locations, on the BookStores website and at while supplies last.

The national Fisher House Foundation provides homes throughout the United States where families of military members and veterans can stay for free while a loved one is in the hospital. Each Fisher House has up to 21 suites with private bedrooms and bathrooms as well as shared kitchens, laundry facilities, dining rooms and living rooms.

Again this year, UArizona student veterans are helping promote Operation Hat Trick merchandise by taking part in a photoshoot modeling the merchandise. Jaye Ferrone, a non-degree-seeking student and Air Force veteran, says the support she received from fellow veterans after being diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder made participating in Operation Hat Trick an easy choice.

"I have been a recipient of the love and support from the military community, so it only feels right that I should pay that back," Ferrone said. "I am only here because people were there for me, so I will do everything in my power to be there for other people who need it."

Ferrone spent eight-and-a-half years in the Air Force, earning the rank of staff sergeant.

Operation Hat Trick is a national organization dedicated to honoring, supporting and rebuilding the lives of American service members and veterans through partnerships with institutions like the University of Arizona. Dot Sheehan founded the nonprofit organization in New Hampshire in 2008 and launched it nationally in 2012. UArizona is a two-time winner of the organization's Excellence in Service Award, which recognizes efforts to support military service members and veterans.

The university also will host its annual Military Appreciation Day football game on Nov. 13 at noon against the University of Utah.


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