Taking strokes for fallen soldiers
Ed Pulido’s voice trembles with emotion for a brief moment as he recalls a road-side bomb in Iraq that left him with only one leg.
“When I was lying on that battlefield, all I could think about was my family,” Pulido said. “I don’t know what it would have been like for my spouse and two children to live without me.”
Over the next few months while recovering from his leg amputation, the retired Army Maj. said his awareness of the responsibility to take care of those who are fallen or wounded from battle grew.
It was through this vision that Pulido said he became the senior vice president of the Folds of Honor Foundation, a national organization dedicated to changing the future of children and spouses of American soldiers killed or disabled in service to their country.
For its first fundraiser, the foundation partnered with the PGA and the USGA to establish Patriot Golf Day where participating golf courses across the nation request golfers to contribute $1 or more to benefit the foundation’s educational scholarships for a wounded or departed soldier’s families, Pulido said.
The foundation was able to raise $1.1 million and distribute 188 scholarships after its first Patriot Golf Day in 2007, and this year golfers in the Truckee-Tahoe area will have the opportunity to make a contribution as well thanks to the efforts made by local resident Ron Parr, Pulido said.
Parr ” an avid golfer and devoted patriot who served in the U.S. Navy ” said he was watching the U.S. Open last month when he caught a glimpse of an advertisement for Patriot Golf Day.
After contacting some golf industry officials to inquire about the event, Parr said without hesitation, he decided to help.
“I’ve been talking to all the golf courses in the Sacramento and Truckee-Tahoe area and the response has been overwhelming,” said Parr, who is a partner with the DMB Highlands Group in Truckee.
From Aug. 29 through Sept. 1, area golf courses such as Martis Camp, Lahontan Golf Club and Old Greenwood Golf Course will ask patrons to make a financial contribution “to those families who have given so much for our nation,” Parr said.
“I think the people left behind are sort of the silent tragedy,” Parr said. “Contributions can help these people educate themselves and be in a less disadvantaged position than they would otherwise.”