The UE 506 union membership at Erie GE Transportation has a history of making big charitable contributions in the Erie community.

Members were at it again Sunday with their 17th annual Hometown Heroes Bowling tournament at Eastway Lanes.

Funds raised through the tournament support the Erie VA Medical Center social work department in providing food, clothing and essential household items to veterans in need.

The tournament has raised thousands of dollars through the years. 

Matt McCracken, chair of the sports committee, and member of UE 506 Executive Board, shared just how much money, and made an observation about the ongoing contract talks with their new employer. "Seventeen years, we've raised so far $336,000 for the Erie VA Hospital, money that we would not be able to raise if we were at work right now, if Wabtec had it's way, I'd be at work right now," McCracken said.

There were large and small item auctions, with one item up for grabs a a big metal American flag made by one of the UE 506 members.

About 211 bowlers joined in the event and hit the lanes along with five wheelchair veterans who also bowled.

In addition to entry fees, sponsors support the teams and the entire event.