Links Fore Leukemia 2014

This past Monday was my second annual LLS golf tournament to attend, with Cutler being the honored hero again.  With Melanie out of town, I brought Cutler as the honored hero and made the decision to bring along Mason as well so he could take in some of his brother’s glory.  After a couple of holes I thought that I might end up regretting this greatly.  It started with Cutler popping Mason in the nose and mouth with his careless golf swing leading to a bloody nose and many tears.  Next I quickly learned that I should have taught Cutler that when he drives and I tell him to stop he needs to take his foot off of the gas pedal as Mason is thrown a good distance from the cart.  Finally things settle down and the boys are playing together quite well and having a good time until Mason forgets that at 8 years old he is much stronger than the five year old Cutler as he unleashes a vicious slap to Cutler’s face.  If not for my three friends in our foursome keeping me a bit reserved, the two boys may have soon found the difference in strength between a 42 year old and their rear end.  Fortunately they were kind of enough to settle down for the last couple of holes and then proved to be great entertainment at the luncheon following the round.

At the luncheon the boys quickly proved how congenial they are as Cutler patrolled the dining area pointing out to all of the players that he was the one on the literature and asking if they remembered him from last year.  Then the MC for the event, a local sports radio morning host, George Dunham, made the mistake of taking a seat at our table.  It’s the first time I had met him and he was an incredibly nice guy.  He spent quite a bit of time talking to both of the boys and had quite the lengthy and entertaining time with them.  Mason now is very excited to listen to the morning show rather than asking for music as he asks which voice is George’s.

Not to be outdone by George, there were four Dallas Stars playing who quickly gathered the boys’ attention.  I am continually amazed at how down to earth hockey players are taking their time to pose with every person that approaches them but to also go out of their way to come say hi to the boys and even invite us down to the locker room before a game next season.  I still wonder at what age will the boys figure out how spoiled their sports experiences are to the average child.

Finally, on our way out, we were approached by a young college student who we had met at the tournament last year.  His father was one of the founders of the tournament, who passed away to Leukemia several years ago.  Last year he took a picture with Cutler and this year he came up to tell me that he is studying to become a pediatric oncologist and that Cutler was his inspiration after meeting him last year.  He pulled out his phone and showed me that his picture with Cutler was his wallpaper.  It gets me in my heart when I think what a difference Cutler can make by just being himself after going through his battle.  I am proud of the impact Cutler’s story has on people and it is a reminder of why we share our story as often as we can with others.  It also reminds me that sometimes it is worth having the boys drive me near insanity just to enjoy these special times together.

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