By DENISE A. RAYMO
---- — MALONE — Sgt. First Class Roy Mitchell, who lost a leg while serving in Afghanistan, is guest speaker at an upcoming fundraiser sponsored by the Salute Military Golf Association.
The steak dinner, set for Saturday, April 27, at the Malone Golf Club, will raise money to teach the sport of golf to disabled American veterans who have lost limbs while serving their country.
The event begins with a cocktail hour at 5 p.m. followed by dinner at 6.
All funds raised will go to the Wounded Warrior Golf Training Center founded at St. Lawrence University in Canton, said Frank Dorchak, director of the association’s Northeast New York chapter.
The center is situated close to the U.S. Army installation at Fort Drum, where many of its students are in recovery.
In addition to amputations, the injured soldiers, sailors, Marines and Air Force personnel may suffer from post-traumatic-stress disorder and have trouble adjusting to life back home.
That’s why encouraging them to learn a new skill and to become physically active again is so important, he said.
The Training Center offers classes that run for eight weeks and four-day clinics that attract veterans from all over the state.
Clinics are also set up at different host golf courses, he said.
The golf pros teach the veterans, and when the classes are done, the students are given a free set of clubs adapted for their use.
There is no charge to the veterans for the clinic, greens fees, golf-cart use or other costs.
That’s what the fundraisers and donations are for, Dorchak said.
The Malone event will also feature a silent auction with high-quality items up for bid, including home-made quilts, woodworking projects, fresh maple syrup, an Adirondack chair and more.
There will also be a 50-50 raffle, a money tree and, weather permitting, a putting contest.
Dorchak is also organizing a series of golf tournaments in the region and inviting some of the program graduates to showcase their newly developed skills.
The events are Friday, May 31, at the Partridge Run Golf Course in Canton; Saturday, June 15, at Highland Greens Golf Course in Dickinson; Wednesday, Aug. 14, at the Malone Golf Club; and the championship tourney on Saturday, Sept. 7, at Partridge Run.
The Canasawacta Country Club in Norwich is also sponsoring a tournament, but the date has not been announced, he said.
The association is supported by contributions and donations from Info Quick Solutions in Liverpool and the New York State Correctional Officers and Police Benevolent Association but is always looking for more sponsors.
Dorchak said it costs between $1,000 and $2,000 to host a clinic and another $2,000 or more to provide each participant with a set of custom clubs.
The chapter has had 27 amputees learn golf through the program since its inception.
Email Denise A. Raymo:firstname.lastname@example.org
IF YOU GO
Tickets for the April 27 steak dinner to benefit the Salute Military Golf Association are $25 per person and available at the American Legion Post 219 in Malone, the Shippin' Shop at 123 Fort Covington St. or by calling 483-6272.