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Fred Funk helps kick off THE PLAYERS Giving Back Month

From left (front): Captain Wesley McCall, Red Coat Andy Baggs, PGA TOUR player Fred Funk, Chairman of USO Greater Jacksonville John Curtin and Executive Director of Greater Jacksonville USO Mike O'Brien pose with a $10,000 check donation from THE PLAYERS Championship. during the Red Coat Ride Out, a Giving Back Month tradition.
(Jennifer Perez/PGA TOUR)

November 8, 2014

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. - THE PLAYERS volunteer leadership – the Red Coats – once again hit the road for what has become a Giving Back Month tradition: the Red Coat Ride Out.  To kick off the ride out, the Red Coats, accompanied by PGA TOUR player Fred Funk, visited the Greater Jacksonville Area USO at Mayport, which was a recipient of a 2014 PLAYERS Championship Red Coat grant.

The Greater Jacksonville Area USO received a $5,000 grant from the Red Coats this year. The Greater Jacksonville Area USO provides more than $1 million annually of “in-kind” services through a wide variety of programs.  Each year, the Greater Jacksonville Area USO touches the lives of 250,000-plus local active-duty military, including local and state wide Army and Air National Guardsmen and Reserves, and their immediate families.

During the visit, the Red Coats, with the help of Fred Funk, hosted dinner with the families members of the service men and women stationed on the USS Fort McHenry.  The event included a surprise check presentation to the USO of $10,000 from THE PLAYERS Championship.

“The men and women of our armed forces put their lives on the line to protect the freedom of this country every day. They sacrifice time with their loved ones while serving abroad,” said 2005 PLAYERS champion Fred Funk. “It is a special honor to host a dinner for these families who may not be together this holiday season.”

“Giving Back Month provides a great platform for THE PLAYERS to support many charities of Northeast Florida,” said 2014 PLAYERS Tournament Chairman Andy Baggs.  “The Greater Jacksonville Area USO does a tremendous job supporting our military men and women and we are extremely proud to help however we can.”

Other Giving Back Month events include Billy Horschel visiting Feeding Northeast Florida on November 13 and a visit to the Police Athletic League on November 20.  On October 15, THE PLAYERS announced the 2014 tournament generated $7.5 million for charity, surpassing the 2013 total dollars generated.  The money generated by THE PLAYERS each year benefits more than 300 charities throughout Northeast Florida, totaling approximately $67.5 million in charitable giving since the event moved to Ponte Vedra Beach in 1977.

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