East Valley Marines Golf for Wounded Warriors

The Marine Corps League annual golf tournament benefits the Wounded Warriors and the Marines Helping Marines program.

The Marine Corps League annual golf tournament benefits the Wounded Warriors and the Marines Helping Marines program.

Denise Lott

Detachment 1296 of the Marine Corps League held their third annual golf tournament at the end of April. Proceeds from this event are used for Wounded Warriors and the Marines Helping Marines program. Oakwood Country Club’s three nine-hole golf courses were the new locations. The club’s golf staff did a great job in supporting the detachment and helping to make this event such a success.

One of the highlights of the morning was a helicopter ball drop. The helicopter, with Marine pilot Ron Baier, circled over the driving range a couple of times, hovered for a few minutes and then discharged 500 golf balls. Each ball was numbered and the purchased ball nearest to the hole won $500, with a second prize of $200 and a third prize of $100.

The event was sold out, with a full slate of 176 players participating. Every player scrambled through 18 holes, having been assigned to two of the three courses. Our community was very supportive in their sponsorships, with lots of raffle prizes and a silent auction, as well as special activities along the courses, like the shotgun tee-offs.

There were also big opportunities during play to win a truck, a car, or a golf cart by achieving a hole-in-one on a par three site. Unfortunately for the players, no one managed to reach it, although the first player’s first shot of the day came within 30 inches of winning the truck. His ball was headed straight to the hole — just a bit more oomph and it would have gone right in.

After finishing play, all gathered in the Oakwood Country Club’s Ballroom for a buffet lunch. Prizes were awarded and several winners, including the $500 ball drop winner, generously donated their prizes right back to the Marines Helping Marines fund.

The consensus was that it was a great day of playing, in spite of the heavy wind that picked up halfway through, and already plans are underway for next year’s event, with participants voicing their willingness to do this again.

In order to be able to continue to provide assistance like this and to help other Arizona Wounded Warriors, the East Valley Marine detachment welcomes all marines and friends or associates. They meet the second Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. in the Bradford Room at the Oakwood Country Club. Visit their website at www.eastvalleymarines.org to learn more.