Last weekend, more than 375 friends and supporters traveled to the JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort in Florida to attend the 13th annual “David Ortiz Celebrity Golf Classic.” The three-day destination golf event raised a remarkable $1.36M for David Ortiz Children’s Fund whose mission is to provide lifesaving heart surgeries and care to children in Ortiz’s native Dominican Republic and New England. To-date, the Fund has saved the lives of over 1,000 children and has helped an additional 10,000 more.
In between hearing the touching stories of some families the Fund has assisted, the star-studded event had plenty of fun and surprises. Amongst the celebrity guests who attended were MLB legends and players Barry Larkin, Gary Sheffield, Thurman Thomas, Tim Wakefield, Jose Bautista, Jim Rice, Bobby Abreu, Bret Boone, Michael Tucker, Carl Everett, Joe Logan and Mychal Givens; NFL stars Neil Smith, Andre Rison, Lonie Paxton, Clinton Portis, Dorsey Levens, Willis McGahee, Joe Andruzzi, Pepper Johnson and Stephen Tulloch; reality stars from “The Bachelorette” fame Blake Hortsmann and Jason Tartick; former PGA pros Jon Curran and Kelly Sheehan; and former Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask.
Additionally, former MLB pitcher Sean Casey hosted Friday evening’s golf draft where two time Stanley Cup champion and current Florida Panther’s Chief Commercial Officer Shawn Thornton took the top-bid captain spot. On Saturday night, comedian-actor Lenny Clarke hosted the awards dinner where the three top-performing golf foursomes were honored with celebrity captain Pepper Johnson leading his team to first place while the team led by Nomad Custom’s founder Roly Padron took second and Clinton Portis’ team landing in third.
Also at the awards ceremony, former Baltimore Oriole outfielder Adam Jones videoed in live from Japan, where he is in playoffs, to pledge $10,000 following Papi’s personal pledge of $25,000 which will allow the nonprofit the ability to fund lifesaving heart surgeries for many more children.