Hundreds of Lowcountry golfers gathered together with community leaders and sponsors on May 20 to raise funds for the military through the Lowcountry Foundation for Wounded Military Heroes’ Ninth Annual Wounded Heroes Golf Classic in Bluffton, SC. In honor of the event, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster declared May 20 as Wounded Heroes Golf Classic Day.
Thanks to the outpouring of support from the local community, the event was one of its most successful ever. Proceeds will once again benefit Birdies for the Brave military homefront charities, with all of the funds raised earmarked for programs and services in the Lowcountry. Since the tournament’s inception, funds raised have provided 17 service canines for heroes suffering from PTSD; funded scholarships for the surviving children of Special Operations soldiers; donated mortgage-free homes to wounded combat veterans; and helped thousands of Lowcountry military families through a variety of programs and services tailored to their needs.
“We are grateful to the Lowcountry Foundation for Wounded Military Heroes for doing such an outstanding job supporting wounded veterans from the greater Lowcountry area through this amazing event,” said the PGA TOUR’s Justin Johns, who spearheads Birdies for the Brave. “These funds will be invaluable in helping Birdies for the Brave homefront charities achieve their shared mission of giving back to those who selflessly put their lives on the line every day in service to our country.”
The Golf Classic was kicked off with an evening volunteer and community appreciation reception featuring live and silent auctions, guest speakers and a performance by Marine veteran and patriotic entertainer Dave Bray, followed the next day by the tournament. Opening ceremonies included a parachute jump by the Special Forces Association Parachute Team, followed by the presentation of the colors and the singing of the national anthem. The 18-hole tournament featured 220 golfers and a record 51 Lowcountry wounded veterans, with the veterans playing golf with every foursome. Live and silent auctions and a post-golf awards dinner followed play, where golfers had the chance to mingle with homefront charity representatives and hear from a variety of guest speakers – including retired General Ann Dunwoody, the former Commander General of one of the Army’s largest commands and the first woman in U.S. military history to achieve a four-star rank.
The Lowcountry Foundation for Wounded Military Heroes was established by Army veteran and life-long golf fan Russ Spicer to address the growing need to help service members returning home from combat with serious injuries and disabilities re-integrate into civilian life. The all-volunteer organization encompasses a five-person Board of Directors, 20 committee leaders, and more than 180 passionate, dedicated volunteers.
“The men and women of our U.S. Armed Forces sacrifice so much to ensure the safety and freedom of all Americans, and we owe them and their families an enormous debt of gratitude,” said Spicer. “We are grateful for the opportunity to work with Birdies for the Brave to give back to these courageous veterans, and appreciate the passion, generosity and compassion of so many caring people in the Lowcountry community – who helped make our ninth annual Wounded Heroes Golf Classic an overwhelming success.”
For more information on the Lowcountry Foundation for Wounded Military Heroes, visit www.woundedmilitaryheroes.org. For more information on Birdies for the Brave, please visit www.birdiesforthebrave.org or follow them on Facebook.