Every year, Dataw Island salutes veterans with a series of events honoring their sacrifice and service. From the guest bartenders to the Veterans Breakfast, the celebration gets bigger and better each year.
This year’s weeklong Veterans Celebration kicked off Sunday morning with the “Flag Brigade,” for which a group of dedicated Dataw Island volunteers place 3,500 flags along 2.5 miles of roadways on the island to usher in honored guests. Later that day, members were greeted with some well-known faces behind the bar (in the Pub) ready to earn some tips in support of Tee It Up for The Troops.
Monday of “Veterans Week” featured a Golf Marathon, in which Assistant Golf Professional Chris Fearn attempted to beat a record set last year of playing 219 holes of golf in one day, with each hole (and birdie, eagle) earning money for veterans’ foundations, through pledges being made not only by residents of Dataw but also online.
On Tuesday, a full day of veterans appreciation began early with the traditional Annual March and Rally. WWII and Korean veterans led a battalion of more than 100 veterans in a march and raising of the colors, while the Dataw singers treated the crowd with majestic renditions of patriotic songs, including each of the armed service songs from each military branch: “Anchors Aweigh” for the U.S. Navy, “The Caissons Go Rolling Along” for the U.S. Army, “The Wild Blue Yonder” for the U.S. Air Force, “The Marines’ Hymn” for the U.S. Marine Corps and “Semper Paratus” for the U.S. Coast Guard. The Starred Spangled Banner was sung by Katie McAllister.
Following the March and Rally, a golf tournament for veterans of all ages and their supporters was played on both of the Dataw Island Golf Courses. The Veterans Golf Classic supports Tee it Up for the Troops, which has beneficiaries such as the Fischer House which builds comfort homes in V.A. and medical centers enabling family members to be close to their injured sons and daughters, which saves them thousands of dollars a month in lodging, travel and food costs. They also support the Gary Sinise Foundation, the On Course Foundation, the Simpson Cup, and the Warrior Canine Connection, to name just a few.
After a fun round of golf, the attendees were invited to a luncheon in the Carolina Room to celebrate the service and sacrifice of many men and women, to feature testimonies provided by wounded veterans.
Last but certainly not least, the Dataw Island Veteran of the Year will be named at a special breakfast on Thursday morning. Guests will also hear from guest speaker Col. Glen Blackburn, USA, Ret., a veteran who lives on Dataw Island and will be speaking about the evolution of Dataw Island’s efforts in support of our veterans.
A special announcement will occur at the breakfast with the total monies raised during the many events held during veterans week.