Golfers flock to tournament to support Piedmont hospital in Augusta

·2 min read

May 2—Sunny skies and strong wind greeted hundreds of golfers Monday afternoon at Woodside Country Club and The Reserve Club at Woodside, with Piedmont Augusta Foundation presenting the Jernigan Memorial Golf Tournament.

The 37th annual tournament drew 84 teams — a record turnout — in support of the foundation (formerly known as University Health Care Foundation) to strengthen its stroke program.

"We think we raised somewhere between $275,000 and $300,000," said Laurie Ott, the foundation's president. "The goal was to raise $300,000."

Top honors went to the Hobbs team, shooting a 48 (including a variety of allowed adjustments), led by Dr. Calvin Hobbs. "He ... delivers babies at our hospital, and is coming up close on a personal record of delivering babies at our hospital," Ott said.

Following Hobbs' bunch, in order, were the Stifel squad (51) and the Kilpatrick Townsend team (52).

"The golf was great," in the assessment of Karson Reed, of Grovetown, Georgia. "The wind was changing so frequently. That's what the biggest challenge was today — losing our hats, stuff blowing off of cars, just everything."

Reed, with a team representing Augusta-based Ireland Electric, was among the most prominent performers, as he won a contest for the longest drive, with a shot that traveled for about 320 yards.

Aiken resident Dwayne Carroll, with Augusta Coca-Cola, also gave a thumbs-up review. "Enjoyed spending the day supporting a worthy cause. Great pace of play, the course was in good shape and the volunteers made everyone feel welcomed. The Jernigan is one of the best tournaments in the CSRA," he wrote.

Monday's highlights included a highly profitable hole-in-one hit by Forrester Adams. The feat, covering 171 yards, won him the option of $30,000 or a two-year lease on a 2023 Lexus.

Augusta resident Bryan Halterman, who had a stroke "about six years ago," spoke to the golfers a few minutes before they scattered to play. "I was 63 years old. My office was about two blocks away from what is now Piedmont Hospital, so I was taken there very quickly, and I was unable to speak, I was unable to move, and generally, I was totally out of it," he said, recalling information he received from his wife.

He recalled excellent treatment and receiving "a miracle drug, which dissolved two clots in my neck." His hospital stay was about five days and there were few repercussions.

Halterman noted that he went back to work within a week. He added, "I can tell you my wife is extremely comforted that we have a medical team like that nearby."