Last week, a kick-off reception was held for the Tidewater Patriot Day Charity Tournament in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. This annual kick-off event gives an insider’s perspective on the families awarded college scholarships through the Folds of Honor foundation. This year was no different, with the Montgomery family as the guests of honor. Staff Sergeant Andrew Montgomery and his wife Julia have three children; Anson, Asher, and Alexis, who have been awarded college scholarships through the Folds of Honor.
Staff Sergeant Andrew Montgomery joined the United States Army at the age of 17 and has served in multiple deployments to Iraq. While in Iraq he was wounded twice, in one instance when his vehicle was hit by roadside explosives. He has also served in Afghanistan as a Squad Leader where he was wounded when he stepped on a land mine.
While in the field hospital, after his third injury, Andrew was told that the effects of his latest concussion might not show up for a few days. That night he left the hospital and met back up with his squad. A good night’s rest was in order because they were scheduled to go out on patrol the next morning.
That morning, Andrew was questioned by his commanding officer. The officer asked if he was fine and ready to re-join the squad. “Of course I’m ready,” Andrew replied. Just minutes before the squad was ready to head out, a lieutenant came running over to Andrew to let him know that they’d talked to his doctors and unfortunately, it would be too dangerous for him to return to action.
While standing next to the squad’s vehicle, with his 90-pound pack strapped on and ready to go, he realized the effects of the concussion were starting to take a toll and that he would now be a burden to his squad.
He has had to overcome many obstacles as a result of his injuries and like so many others; he has turned to golf as a way to heal. Since his return home, Andrew has graduated from the Golf Academy of America in Myrtle Beach. While at the Academy, he was invited to join President George W. Bush in Dallas, Texas for his two-day, 36-hole Warrior Open. Andrew’s next goal is to obtain membership to the Professional Golfers’ Association of America, and help other wounded and disabled veterans learn the game of golf as a form of therapy.
Not too long ago, his love for golf and his family came to a crossroads. His family was getting ready to purchase a house and realized they needed more money for the closing costs. Without blinking an eye, Andrew sold his golf clubs. These golf clubs meant more than recreation to Andrew, these were clubs that allowed him to escape some memories of the battlefield. He’s at peace on the golf course. But this gesture isn’t unlike Andrew; he does whatever he has to do, putting himself last and others first. It’s what he’s always done and this is where a great group of people became involved.
All of the hardships and sacrifices that Andrew has endured didn’t go un-noticed. The Tidewater Charity Tournament Committee, Callaway Golf, Carolinas PGA Section, and GlobalGolf decided to surprise Andrew with something he never saw coming; a full set of Callaway golf clubs. Driver, fairway woods, hybrids, irons, all presented in a U.S. Open stand bag. These gifts are just a small token to let Andrew know that his good deeds haven’t gone un-noticed, that he is not forgotten, and we’ll never forget.
To learn more about the Tidewater Charity Tournament click here.
To learn more about the Folds of Honor click here.