EDISON, N.J. – During this year’s 2015 The Barclays at Plainfield Country Club in Edison, NJ, PGA TOUR player Bubba Watson helped pay it forward by celebrating military members, veterans and their families during a military appreciation ceremony in their honor.
Watson, whose father was a Green Beret, spoke briefly, and was then the recipient of two special gifts. Command Sergeant Major Patrick Alston, the Senior Enlisted Leader for the United States Strategic Command, Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska, presented Watson with a beautiful crystal award on behalf of the Department of Defense in recognition for his long-standing support for our military – including serving as a TOUR player supporter of Birdies for the Brave homefront group the Green Beret Foundation. In addition, PGA TOUR Deputy Commissioner Jay Monahan presented Watson with a beautiful collage on behalf of all 11 Birdies for the Brave homefront groups in appreciation for his extraordinary generosity earlier this year. In January, Watson sold his 1939 Cadillac LaSalle C-Hawk at auction for $410,000, and donated 100% of the proceeds to Birdies for the Brave. Watson was visibly touched by the honors and expressed how humbled he was by the service and sacrifice of our courageous military members, as well as the dedicated family members and caregivers who stand behind them every step of the way.
Other special guests at the patriotic ceremony, which included military pageantry and a performance by the U.S. Marine Corps Color Guard from the 6th Communication Battalion in Brooklyn, NY, and a performance by the West Point Band, included The Barclays Executive Director Peter Mele; Tom McGuire, managing director and the Americas treasurer for the Barclays Group, co-head of the U.S. Barclays Military Services Network and a former Major in the U.S. Marine Corps; and actress Melissa Joan Hart, who earlier in the day hosted an Operation Shower group baby shower for 40 military moms-to-be whose spouses are deployed members of the New York National Guard and Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, many of whom also attended the ceremony.
In addition to the military appreciation ceremony, other Birdies for the Brave military appreciation activities that took place during The Barclays included complimentary admission for military members and their families, thanks to supporting sponsorship by Quicken Loans; hospitality in the Birdies for the Brave Patriots’ Outpost sponsored by Barclays; a golf clinic at Picatinny Arsenal featuring PGA TOUR player and New Jersey native Morgan Hoffmann; a Callaway Warrior Club Fitting on the practice facility, where two local wounded heroes were fitted with their own custom set of Callaway golf clubs; the Birdies for the Brave Military Caddie Program, where active duty military members had the chance to caddie for TOUR players during the Pro-Am; and the presentation of a service dog that will be donated to a veteran with PTSD thanks to support by Stryker.
For more information about Birdies for the Brave, please visit www.birdiesforthebrave.org or follow them on Facebook.