My friend Valerie Casey, the organizer of the “first annual” Fisher House Tampa Golf Classic at Heritage Isles Golf & Country Club on November 18, says she’s happy with the 2011 tournament’s 130+-golfer field, the beautiful weather and the wonderful spirit of everyone who came out to enjoy a fun round of golf, food and entertainment and raise money for a very worthy cause.

Actually, the tournament itself isn’t new, only its name has changed. As it has its previous four years, when the event raised a total of nearly $60,000 under its previous name, this year’s Fisher House Golf Classic also raised a hefty sum of money to help the Tampa Fisher House — the amazing residence which houses the families of the wounded veterans (such as U.S. Army Sgt. Joel Tavera; see page 1) who are cared for at the James A. Haley Veterans Administration Hospital on Bruce B. Downs Blvd, just south of Fletcher Ave.

At our press time, Casey and her wonderful team of volunteers did not yet have a fund-raising total for the 2011 event, but Casey says that, in light of the economy, she isn’t complaining about nearly matching last year’s total of about $25,000 raised.

“We still have some donations coming in,” Casey said at our press time. The Fisher House is so important to our wounded service men and women and their families, so it’s important to me that we do what we can to help.”

Appreciative Fisher House Tampa manager Paula Welenc says the golf tourney is the Fisher House’s largest fund raiser each year.

For more info about the Tampa Fisher House, visit — GN

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