TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Lightning honored Shiloh Khan as the 28th Lightning Community Hero this season during the first period of tonight's game versus the Pittsburgh Penguins. Khan, who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, will donate half to Onbikes Inc., while the other half will go towards a scholarship for his own education.
At 14 years old Khan missed an entire month of school while living out of his family's car. His mother was the only member of the family working and most days they had to choose between her going to work or driving the children to school. Eventually the family got back on their feet but Shiloh's father, a schizophrenic, stopped taking his medications which split the family up. Khan stayed with his father and joined Starting Right Now, an organization that helps homeless teens.
Having experienced attendance issues due to a lack of transportation, Shiloh wanted to help other students struggling with the same issue. Even though there are bus routes that provide transportation for many students these routes do not reach all students. Khan has partnered with Onbikes and is seeking to raise public awareness and implement a program where students struggling with transportation issues would have access to bikes to use for getting to school. He hopes to work with schools and set up programs that not only provide bikes but also track the attendance of these students and miles ridden and even reward students with positive results. This would hopefully not only increase attendance in schools but also teach children a healthier lifestyle.
Shiloh Khan becomes the 351st Lightning Community Hero since Jeff and Penny Vinik introduced the Lightning Community Hero program in 2011-12 with a $10 million, five-season commitment to the Tampa Bay community. Through this evening's game, in total, the Lightning Foundation has granted $17.65 million to more than 400 different nonprofits in the Greater Tampa Bay area. During the summer of 2016, the Vinik's announced that the community hero program will give away another $10-million over the next five seasons.