The 20th Annual Boston Bruins Foundation Charity Golf Tournament may have been sandwiched between two hurricanes; but the sun came out just in time for the Boston Bruins and Special Olympics Massachusetts to have a perfect day at the Pinehills Golf Club.
Special Olympics MA has been a beneficiary of the tournament since 2018—when the Bruins Foundation made an initial pledge to donate $1 million to Special Olympics over the course of three years. Since the partnership was announced, the Foundation has continued to support Special Olympics athletes across the state through both fundraising and by promoting an accepting and inclusive community.
“As we mark the 20th anniversary of the Foundation and more importantly, the 100th anniversary of the Boston Bruins Organization, I recognize that we wouldn’t be here without our fans and our community,” said President of the Boston Bruins Foundation, Bob Sweeney. “It’s our responsibility to give back and support that community and what better way to do so than through a program like Special Olympics that focuses their work on bringing people together. We have partnered on the idea that we all need to ‘Be Inclusive’ in all aspects of our lives and we look forward to solidifying that message for the next 20 years.
In addition to Special Olympics MA and Boston Bruins Foundation Staff, Bruins players and alumni, there were also two Special Olympics athletes who spent the day on the course— John Dunleavy and Tyler Lagasse. John has been a Special Olympics athlete for more than a decade, participating in swimming and basketball, and works within the Boston Bruins organization. Tyler is also a longtime Special Olympics athlete who has competed at three Special Olympics USA Games in golf and has participated in a PGA Golf Experience where he played alongside golf professionals.
John and Tyler waited at the front of the club and greeted Bruins players and alumni as they got out of their cars. Instead of giving a polite handshake or wave while walking by, the Bruins players each stopped and had a short conversations with both Special Olympics athletes—and John’s conversation with Charlie McAvoy in particular showed the heartwarming bond between Special Olympics and the Bruins.
“My favorite part [of the tournament] is seeing all the Bruins players and past alumni players,” said John. “It makes me happy that they donate money to Special Olympics. It’s a great cause and they help us get a lot of equipment for Special Olympics.”
John spent his day on the green, putting for teams that made a donation to Special Olympics, and similarly, Tyler was driving balls for players who made a donation (and it didn’t take much convincing for teams to make the donation at either hole).
The day concluded with a raffle and silent auction, dinner, and most importantly, Tyler showing Milan Lucic his Lucic t-shirt in honor of the 8-seasoned Bruins player returning to Beantown.
With this year marking the 100th anniversary for the Boston Bruins and 20th anniversary for the Bruins Foundation, Special Olympics MA is proud to be supported by such an iconic and inclusive organization and is eager to see where the next 20 years leads the partnership.