This weekend, the community is invited to a free concert in honor of local first responders and military families. A local Navy veteran organized the concert, Rockin’ 4 Heroes, as a thank you to first responders’ work during the pandemic, and for their help to his family.
Michael Quinn has lived in Oro Valley for more than 20 years. He and his wife Bonnie say they have long been supporters of veterans and first responders, but watching how the police and ambulance drivers helped their son during cancer inspired a greater form of thank you.
“The first responder community was so loving, and Northwest Fire and Oro Valley Police were extremely kind to us,” Quinn said. “So me and my wife said that we wanted to do something nice for these people. And we knew that a tray of cookies wouldn’t suffice. We knew we’d have to do something big… And given what the community has been through these past 18 months, we owe it to the first responders and the police who stood guard and did their jobs.”
Rockin’ 4 Heroes will honor four groups: first responders, active-duty military, veterans and Gold Star families (relatives of a fallen service member). In addition to these groups, the event will also remember two locals during the opening ceremony: fallen Tucson EMT Jacob Dindinger and fallen Army SPC Kale D. Clay.
“We’re honoring four hero groups, but we’re also honoring two local families in a more specific way,” Quinn said. “And as much as we want first responders, active duty military, veterans and Gold Stars to come, we also want the public to come out and enjoy.”
Entertainment will be provided by Leonid & Friends, a group of 11 classically trained Russian musicians who cover the music of Chicago and other classic rock bands with a jazz and orchestral twist. In addition to dutifully replicating the music, they also embellish the songs with multiple singers and musical groups. Their work has earned the band multiple sold-out tours across the US.
This show by Leonid & Friends at James D. Kriegh Park at Oro Valley comes at the end of a West Coast tour. Originally the band wasn’t expected to make it to Arizona, but one stop on their tour was cancelled and they were able to schedule for Rockin’ 4 Heroes. This will be the only show on their tour that is free and open to the public.
“I respect their discipline, they’re incredibly talented musicians,” Quinn said. “It’s so much more than cover songs. They include strings and horn sections into rock ‘n’ roll.”
The concert will be held outdoors, with food trucks and beverages available for purchase. The public is invited to bring lawn chairs and blankets. Although the concert is free, the organizers will be accepting donations and all proceeds will go to the Veterans and First Responders Living Memorial, which is planned for Naranja Park.
Rockin’ 4 Heroes
w/ Leonid & Friends
Honoring first responders, active-duty military, veteran and gold star families
Open to the public
2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 11
James D. Kriegh Park
23 W. Calle Concordia