Verizon wireless Provides Digital Phones to Downtown Ambassadors

May 30, 2000-Dayton-Verizon Wireless, formerly AirTouch Cellular and now the nation's largest wireless communications provider, has provided 10 digital phones to the "Downtown Ambassadors." The group of 50 volunteers will assist Dayton Dragons patrons before and after each game by providing directions and parking options, handing out maps and acting as neighborhood security.

On game days the Downtown Ambassadors will be stationed on street corners and key downtown streets, and will use the phones to communicate with one another, call for emergency assistance if necessary, and help lost patrons meet up with their parties.

Steve Hammons, regional director for Verizon Wireless, said the donation of phones will make the jobs of the Downtown Ambassadors much easier. "They'll allow the Ambassadors to stay in constant contact with one another, re-direct patrons to another

parking location when one is full, or call AAA if a fan gets a flat tire," Hammons said. "We're glad we can help the Ambassadors make fan experiences positive and keep them coming back for more."

In addition to donating phones to the Ambassadors, Verizon Wireless has also provided a van that will be stationed in the Mendelson's parking lot near the stadium prior to each game to allow fans to make free local calls.

"We'll be on hand to offer patrons a free local call," Hammons said, "in case they need to take care of last minute business before the game begins."

Verizon Wireless' donation of phones and service to the Downtown Ambassadors comes a month after the new company was formed by combining the U.S. wireless assets of Vodofone AirTouch and Bell Atlantic Mobile, including PrimeCo. "One of the first messages we wanted to send is our continuing commitment to the people of Dayton," added Hammons.

In addition to the Ambassador sponsorship, Verizon Wireless is a major sponsor of other Dayton events and organizations, including Junior Achievement and the Dayton Air Show.

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the largest wireless communications provider in the U.S. with more than 18 million wireless voice and data customers and nearly 4 million paging customers. The new coast-to-coast wireless company was formed by the combination of the U.S. wireless businesses of Bell Atlantic Corp. (NYSE:BEL) and Vodafone AirTouch Plc (LSE:VOD; NYSE:VOD). The new company includes the assets of Bell Atlantic Mobile, AirTouch Cellular, PrimeCo Personal Communications and AirTouch Paging. Verizon Wireless will be further strengthened by the addition of the wireless assets of GTE Corp. (NYSE:GTE) when it completes its merger with Bell Atlantic. The new company will have a footprint covering nearly 90 percent of the U.S. population, 49 of the top 50 and 96 of the top 100 U.S. markets.

Headquarter in New York City and Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is 30,000
employees strong. Reporters and editors can find more Verizon Wireless information at: http://www.verizonwireless.com/mediacenter.