Golf tournament celebrates veterans on Super Bowl Sunday

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Dozens of people gathered on the green before the big game on Sunday, to honor our nation’s servicemen. They came out to the River Oaks Golf Plantation for the 14th annual Super Bowl Golf Tournament.

“I’m in a good place and being here helps,” says Sundance Scardino. He is one of six veterans who were flown out to Myrtle Beach for the golf tournament, courtesy of the non-profit Special Operations Wounded Warriors. Scardino battled post-traumatic stress disorder after serving in Desert Storm. “When you’re diagnosed with it at first you think there’s something wrong with you but then you learn that it’s a natural response to the trauma that you’ve experienced.”

This is the second year Dagwood’s Deli and Bumstead’s Pub in Myrtle Beach teamed up with the local SOWW chapter for the tournament. Jess Aylward is on the board of directors and says it’s their small way of thanking our servicemen. “They come back to the states a little banged up so they get a little bit of rest and relaxation. They’re around a lot of like minded people. They can let loose a little bit, they don’t have to be so guarded.”

Lee Bennett served on special operations in Vietnam between 1969 and 1971. He says he can’t help but think of his fellow soldiers who never made it back to the states. “They’re individuals who gave their lives so we could have the freedom to play golf here today. They won’t come back, but I’m here. So when I hear the national anthem play, my eyes tear because I think about them.” That’s a sentiment Scardino shares.  “National anthem gets me every time. Every time. I started to kind of stand up a little straighter, a sense of pride, you know. I’ve been to Afghanistan. I’ve been to Saudi Arabia. I’ve been to Kuwait and every time I’m so happy when I land back in the United States.”