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07-24-13-golf-tourney.gifA par-fect event is on tap for the Lightning Friends and Family Memorial Organization on Aug. 2. A golf tournament is planned at the Baywood Golf Club. The organization was formed to construct a memorial to honor fallen soldiers and veterans of the 525th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade and 525th Military Intelligence Brigade. The money raised from this event will fund the memorial the organization plans to build at the 525th BFSB Headquarters at Fort Bragg.

Malinda Cox, whose husband is a soldier, first thought of this idea when her husband was deployed and she realized there was no memorial for the fallen soldiers of the unit. The founding group of the Lightning Friends and Family Memorial Organization put their heads together and eventually came up with the memorial idea. Figuring out what the fundraiser should be wasn’t hard, either. A lot of members on the committee play golf and know it can be a great fundraiser. Emily Damboise, fundraising chair and a good friend of Cox, grew up in a family that plays golf and reiterates the positive affect golf tournaments can have.

“It’s a lot of fun seeing friends and family coming together. It’s so great to honor our fallen and to see teamwork and support in such a big task,” she said. Participants can also join in on the silent auction, 50/50 raffle and a raffle to win two free golf entries to the tournament. Each will be going on all day at the tournament. There are fantastic items available for the silent auction including a one-week stay at the Massanutten Resort in Virginia, spa certificates and free rounds of golf offered by Hooters. The memorial organization is also accepting donations and sponsorships.

“No item is too small,” Damboise said.

Winners of the silent auction and 50/50 raffle will be announced at the awards ceremony after the golf tournament. Winners of the free golf entry were announced at the Lt. Col. Toy Tisedale Maintenance Facility on July 15.

By next year, the memorial should be ready to go. Members have been getting the word out and after it is completed, the next step is sustaining it and funding scholarships for 525th members and their families.

Registration starts at 7 a.m. and the tournament is at 9 a.m. Lunch is provided and a cash bar is available before, during and after the game. Practice space is also available.

“We are still currently seeking volunteers and encourage people to come out and talk to military personnel about their lifestyle. It’s about coming in for fellowship and doing something good for service members,” Damboise said.

You can register for the tournament online at lightningmemorial.com. Tournament fees include: $45 for retired veterans, $50 for civilians and E7-above, $35 for E6 and below. There is a late entry fee (after July 19) of $65. Visit lightningmemorial.com for more information about sponsorship opportunities and the tournament; also check out the group’s Facebook page.

Tournament entry fees, contributions and sponsorships are tax deductible, and proceeds, net of expenses, go directly to the Lightning Friends and Family Memorial.

Proper golf course attire is required including collared shirts and Bermuda length shorts, no jeans or T-shirts.

Photo: The 525 Battlefield Surveillance Brigade and 525th Military Intelligence Brigade are raising funds for a monument to honor their fallen soldiers.

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