Retired San Antonio Spurs legend Tim Duncan broke his media silence Friday night to make a plea for help for the residents of the U.S. Virgin Islands, his childhood home and now the site of destruction from Hurricane Irma.

"I’m donating $250,000 immediately — tonight — to the storm relief efforts in the U.S. Virgin Islands. And going forward, I pledge to match your donations up to the first $1 million," he said in a post on

He urged his fans to make a donation through a special link:

Duncan plans to organize a relief effort to make a difference on the ground in the USVI as soon as possible.

"Starting as soon as the weather permits, I’ll be chartering an airplane full of supplies from San Antonio to St. Croix, the biggest town in the Virgin Islands," he wrote. "And I’m already busy putting together a team — some from the Virgin Islands and some who will fly in from elsewhere — to help manage the relief effort."

Duncan urged people to help now rather than waiting for the dust to settle. He was there in 1989 when Hurricane Hugo hit the islands.

"I’ve lived through a hurricane before. I’ve seen its destruction," he wrote. "I’ve seen why getting help — immediate and sustained help — is so vital."