Max Homa shaved his hands and legs in the name of charity as stars from the PGA TOUR continued to pitch in to support communities impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Homa, a PGA TOUR winner known as well for his wit and roasting his fans’ golf swings on Twitter, helped raise US$40,000 (B1.3 million) for food banks around the United States. After reaching the target, he duly posted a photo with his hands and legs all clean-shaven.
“I barely recognize myself (The mustache plays a big part in that). Thx to everyone who donated! 2 hours of shaving well worth all the meals we have helped provide. And to answer everyone’s questions, no I didn’t break any razors and yes I think I can swing faster now #speed,” Homa said on Twitter.
Charity is part of the PGA TOUR’s heart and soul where tournaments are linked closely to local charities. Last year, the TOUR surpassed US$3 billion in its all-time charitable totals.
Reigning U.S. Open champion Gary Woodland chipped in US$100,000 through his foundation to eight different non-profit organisations in his hometown of Topeka, Kansas to help them see through difficult times.
His Presidents Cup teammate Tony Finau has teamed up with For the Kids organisation which will deliver meals and hygiene kits to 500 school kids in Salt Lake City while 2019 International Team captain Ernie Els helped a golf club in New Jersey gather food and drinks for first responders at a local hospital.
Finau said in a statement: “Our hope is that by taking care of and helping these kids and their families, they will get the nourishment they need and feel the spirit of love and community that makes Salt Lake City, and the whole state of Utah, a great place to call home.”
Five-time PGA TOUR winner Marc Leishman and his wife Audrey used their Begin Again Foundation in Virginia Beach to help healthcare workers receive food at local hospitals, knowing the workers spend long-hours caring for those down with the virus. The Leishmans felt they needed to help food operators and restaurant owners too as businesses have been affected due to social-distancing measures.
Audrey knows the importance of healthcare as she fought for her life five years ago due to sepsis and toxic shock syndrome which required her to be put on a ventilator with a five percent chance of survival. After pulling through, the Leishmans are forever grateful to healthcare workers hence their desire to support frontliners during this health crisis.
“With our personal experience of me getting sick, we realized how hard these doctors, nurses, the support staff, respiratory therapists, how hard they all work to keep patients alive,” Audrey told www.pgatour.com. “I wouldn’t be here without them, and so we wanted to support them.”
Leishman added: “And then the restaurants having to be closed for eating, we want to keep them employed. And I know four meals for just us ... it’ll make a little difference, but not a huge difference. … I don’t know how many meals they’re buying, but 60 or 80, or whatever it is. If we buy that many, that could make a difference to that restaurant, possibly staying open or not.
“We’re just trying to help in any way we can.”
Other golf stars including veteran Jim Furyk, a 17-time winner on the PGA TOUR, and his wife Tabitha contributed US$100,000 which will be spent on providing healthcare workers with personal protective equipment required to deal with the coronavirus while Spanish star Sergio Garcia donated €240,000 (B8.4mn) to the Red Cross of Spain.