“PGA HOPE Day” marks inaugural Myrtle Beach Classic with tribute to veterans

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW)– Across the state of South Carolina, May 9 will forever be a day devoted to celebrating military service individuals and veterans who are improving their lives through the game of golf.

The State House of Representatives passed the resolution on March 27 and Thursday morning the proclamation ceremony took place at the Marriott Resort in Myrtle Beach.

“I think it’s only fitting that we do this proclamation today, May 9, for our veterans and for PGA hope at the start of our tournament, because we are indeed golf capital of the world,” said CEO Karen Riordan of Visit Myrtle Beach.

Many veterans say the game of golf has become a powerful tool to help them navigate the challenges they face when returning home from service.

“I know how it has changed my life. But more importantly than me, I see how it has changed the lives of many others,” said veteran Harold Hill.

The initiative led by Project Golf aims to honor the positive impact the PGA HOPE program has on the lives of active military, reserves, and veterans through the game of golf.

The PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) program offers specialized golf instruction. The program has been influential in enhancing the lives of more than 600 individuals in South Carolina alone.

“Through that therapeutic aspect of learning the game of golf, or improving your game of golf, you can find solace, you can find some reason to come out of your house and go somewhere where there’s fresh air and sunshine, most of the time, and rub shoulders with someone who understands what you’re talking about,” said Hill.

The statewide recognition day aims to honor the positive impact their program and the PGA Hope program has on the lives of active military, reserves, and veterans in the state.

Congressman Russell Fry’s office presented an American Flag that was flown over the United States Capital to honor the veterans on this special day.

The City of Myrtle Beach also declared May 9 as PGA Hope Day to honor project golf and the PGA Hope program for the positive impact their service has on the lives of active military, reserves, and veterans by introducing them to the game.

“From the bottom of my heart as a South Carolinian this is a very important day and I salute all of you for your contributions that you have me to make our nation strong and safe as it is thank you,” said Hill.

There is a veteran’s outpost mobile vet center at the Myrtle Beach Classic on the 11th hole and is open to all veterans in recognition of their service.

“We hope this is the beginning of a really, really long tradition. We’re able to celebrate PGA Hope Day, every single year, and our dream is that we will be able to have this incredible legacy tournament that will go on hopefully as long as the MBACC’s been going on,” said Riordan.

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Savannah Denton joined News 13 in July 2023 as a reporter and producer. Savannah is from Atlanta, Georgia, and is a graduate of the University of Alabama. Follow Savannah on X, formerly Twitter, and read more of her work here

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