By Richard Walker
Archuleta County Veterans for Veterans
On May 29, the Archuleta County Veterans for Veterans held its annual golf tournament at the Pagosa Springs Golf Club. This is the largest fundraising event of the year for this 5019(c)(3)charitable organization. Last year’s tournament was canceled due to COVID-19 restrictions, but this year’s event was an unqualified success. The winning team came in with a score of 56; however, the real winner is the veteran community of our county and of the Four Corners region as our organization spends 100 percent of our funds helping those vets.
There was a full field of 144 golfers at the tourney and more who wanted to play. The event was planned and supported by dozens of volunteers who came from as far away as Kansas to assist in and to play in the event.
The American Legion Honor Guard firing team provided a rifle volley as the San Juan Flyers roared overhead twice. In their first pass, the aircraft flew in the “missing man” formation in honor of all service men and women who gave their last full measure in defense of and service to our country. On their second pass, eight minutes later, they dazzled the crowd with colored smoke. Air Force veteran Niara Isley sang our national anthem and then the crowd recited the Pledge of Allegiance. Scott White was honored for his long-time support of our veterans and for organizing the Veterans Day breakfast for many years.
Instead of the traditional “Shotgun start,” the signal to begin play was a single shot from an M-1 Garand rifle, which seemed fitting considering the tribute given to our veterans at this event.