About The Chicago 502

The Chicago 502 was formed in 2001 by a group of veterans and civilians, whose goal was to support the military by “adopting” an elite unit of the U.S. Army. They chose the 502nd INFANTRY REGIMENT, 2nd BRIGADE COMBAT TEAM, 101ST AIRBORNE DIVISION (AIR ASSAULT), based at Fort Campbell, Kentucky (the "502nd").

Our Mission is to:

Provide financial support to the soldiers and families of the 502nd and safeguard their welfare through a variety of means, including: direct monetary assistance to soldiers and families in financial distress; giving commissary and retail gift cards; buying children's car seats; paying medical bills that the soldiers or families simply can't afford to pay or helping reduce the debt load from unanticipated expenses


Honor the soldiers and be a supportive presence in their lives and in the lives of their families


Promote interaction among the Regiment, the people of Chicago and greater Illinois to build an appreciation for the courage and sacrifice of the 502nd and their families and a greater understanding of the 502nd's duties and obligations


Provide entertainment, instruction, recreation and other wholesome activities for the soldiers of the Regiment during their off-duty hours


Raise money through soliciting donations from individuals and organizations to maintain and advance the work of the organization

The Chicago 502 operates under the auspices of the Armed Forces Council of Chicago, an Illinois Not-for-Profit Corporation.

Click here to see a copy of our Form 990


The Chicago 502 is run by a group of volunteers who rely on donations of time and services to help us accomplish our mission. In turn, 97% of the financial donations we receive go directly to the support of the 502nd Regiment's soldiers and families.


The funds we raise are used to, among other things:

-Purchase memorials and provide support for fallen warrior families

-Provide wounded warrior support

-Give direct emergency financial assistance to families

-Purchase retail and commissary gift cards (used by the soldiers and families for food and gifts)

-Give Thanksgiving holiday baskets to soldiers and families

-Purchase telephone long distance calling cards (used by the soldiers to call home when deployed overseas)

Service and Support Activities

Activities at Ft. Campbell, KY:


In addition to fundraising, our members are actively involved in the lives of the soldiers and families of the 502d during their deployments at Fort Campbell, including attendance and participation in:

  • Change of Command ceremonies
  • Distinguished Member of the Regiment ceremonies
  • Fallen Warrior Services
  • Week of the Eagle activities

Activities and Support outside of Ft. Campbell:

  • Visits with wounded warriors at Walter Reed Hospital
  • Recognizing 502nd soldiers who have achieved "Soldier of the Quarter" status by treating them to a weekend in Chicago, which typically includes attending professional sporting events, socializing with members of The Chicago 502 and touring the city
  • Organizing participation of the 502nd soldiers with the Union League Club Boys and Girls Club summer camp

"Your donation of over 700 Walmart gift cards provided a timely and significant boost to the morale during the holiday season. Many young soldiers and families benefited tremendously from your generosity"

Colonel Brett G. Sylvia, Commander, 502nd Infantry Regiment