PLATTSBURGH — Forty-four teams will compete in the Mitch Kilkeary Memorial Golf Tournament on Sunday.
“It was above and beyond what we thought we were going to get,” participation-wise, said Keith Kilkeary, Mitch’s father.
The response was so great that the four-person team limit was expanded from 32 to 44, and 10 other interested teams have had to be turned away so far because of space constraints, said Mackenzie “Mack” Kilkeary, Mitch’s older brother.
“Just about everyone participating has some sort of connection to Mitch,” said Mack, who is 21.
Mitch was 19 when he died by suicide in April.
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Mack has been coordinating the tournament since he and his cousin Kevin Kilkeary, 21, of Peru, had the idea a couple of months ago.
But the whole family has helped him along the way, and he couldn’t have done it without them, he said.
The Golf Tournament will be followed by a steak dinner at the Butcher Block restaurant, where $1,200 in prizes donated by area businesses will be distributed. Thirty-five local businesses are sponsoring holes on the golf course.
Mitch graduated from Plattsburgh High School in 2011 and had completed a semester at Clinton Community College, where he was majoring in wind-turbine technology and played on the college soccer team.
“When he walked into the room, he brightened (it) immediately,” Mack said.
He said friends of his brother have told him that every time they are reminded of Mitch, it brings a smile to their face.
“Everybody loved him,” Keith said.
In high school, Mitch participated in Drama Club, including a major role in the musical “Hairspray,” and played varsity soccer, a sport he enjoyed his whole life, Keith said.
Mitch enjoyed spending time with his friends and playing the ukulele, an art Mack taught him.
In the scholarship application introduction, which Mack wrote, he described his brother as bright and hardworking with a humorous, unforgettable personality.