By Molly Ingram
Friday and Saturday, Paws4Vets held both a golf tournament out at the Legends course on Parris Island and then followed that on Saturday with a scavenger hunt in downtown Beaufort for the non-golfing set.
Paws4Vets provides trained assistance dogs for veterans who are suffering from Post-Traumatic-Stress Syndrome or having received severe physical injury in the service of our country. The golf tournament, with more than 80 players, began with the Battery Creek Marine ROTC honor guard presenting colors and the singing of the National Anthem. Miami and Shelly Phillips, organizers for these events then made the presentation of a check for $10,000 to Zachary Whisenhunt of Paws4Vets and then the tournament began.
And so did the rain.
But the rain didn’t seem to deter these stalwart players. Drenched, soaked, and cold, they still managed to come back with some amazing scores. The group gathered to enjoy a “cold one” and bid on some great silent auction items as the pros at the Legends determined the winners. Smiles, jokes, and laughter told me the day was a success despite the weather and the group had come together for a wonderful common cause.
The next morning, in beautiful sunshine, non-golfers and their dogs met at the Arsenal in downtown Beaufort to participate in a scavenger hunt where the clues led you to many local businesses, particularly ones on Bay Street. The fastest team of owner and dog, managed to finish in 12 ½ minutes – not the 90 minutes that Miami and Shelly had anticipated. But no worries, the event just moved ahead. Prizes were awarded and everyone headed off to Saturday chores a little sooner than expected.
At both events, being able to meet and talk with some of the Vets who were there with their dogs added an incredibly meaningful and intense overlay to the events. Paws4Vets does save lives. Paws4Vets makes it possible for some broken men to become a functioning part of society once again. Paws4Vets provides protection from the awful things that can come in the night. Paws4Vets is one of the most inspiring non-profits I have had the privilege of working with. The Island News was proud to be part of these two great events and to help the work that Miami and Shelly are doing to save our veterans.
Top photo: Patrick Wyatt, a disabled U.S. Marine Corps Veteran, reassures his dog “Princess” prior to the start of the scavenger hunt.