For 30 years, golf enthusiasts have hit the links in support of Marklund. The 31st Annual Golf Classic was no different as it attracted 210 golfers and an additional 60 diners, who raised more than $157,000 in net proceeds Thursday, May 30, at the Hilton Chicago – Indian Lakes Resort in Bloomingdale.
More than $14,000 in donations raised during the Fund-in-Need portion of the evening’s dinner/auction will finance the purchase of a “Squeeze Machine,” a self-regulated hugging system designed for children with Autism, and a SMART board interactive/touch screen educational system, both of which will benefit Marklund Day School students. With an additional $35,800 in live and silent auction proceeds, this year’s event saw a 16-percent increase over last year’s totals.
Porter Pipe & Supply Company of Addison served as the Presenting Sponsor for the event, with owners Jim and Bud Porter taking on the roles of co-chairs. Bud also served as the emcee and auctioneer at
the dinner. “We were honored to co-chair this event and help fund raise for Marklund,” Jim said. “The need is great, and the people who live and work there are just wonderful.”
“We believe that those who have been blessed with much, much is expected,” added Bud, “and we’re happy to give back when and where we can.”
One of the most inspirational moments of the evening came when the room fell silent as Marklund client Heather D. presented the invocation using a special communication device attached to her wheelchair.
“Those who attended were very generous and will make a difference in the lives of many. For that, we are grateful,” noted Jim.
HEROES OF THE YEAR
Arlana and George Fako of LaGrange received Marklund’s 2013 Hero of the Year award at the Golf Classic dinner/auction. The award, established in 2003, is given annually to an individual, couple or group who have tirelessly supported Marklund’s vision to make
everyday life possible for individuals with profound disabilities and helped enrich the lives of the infants, children and adults served. George & Arlana were first introduced to Marklund through his employer when Navistar sponsored a Christmas collection for
Marklund in December 2003. Over the past 19 years, George and Arlana have given nearly 3,000 volunteer hours at the Marklund Children’s Home in Bloomingdale, visiting with clients, assisting them on countless outings and at events including Summer
Games and the Spring Fling. They have donated client gifts for Christmas, sponsored four clients as Guardian Angels, and generously contributed to fundraising events.
“We have had the pleasure of volunteering at Marklund Children’s Home for more than 19 years,” said George. “We are proud to receive this award. We love interacting with the clients and find it very rewarding to see a smile on their faces.
Also, the staff at the Children’s Home is incredible. Their dedication and compassion is outstanding.”
CELEBRITY GOLFERS & SPONSORS
Included on the roster of celebrity golfers at this year’s event were former NFL Hall of Fame Bears defensive end Dan Hampton and Bears Super Bowl Champ Emery Moorehead. Other former athletes included:
Jockey Eddie Arroyo
Ronnie Bull, Bears
Bill Campbell, Cubs/Red Sox
Robin Earl, Bears
Ted Hendricks, Raiders (Hall of Fame)
Gene Hiser, Cubs
Randy Hundley, Cubs
Glen Kozlowski, Bears
Bill Leagans, LA Rams
Bob Miller, Tigers/Mets
Rich Nye, Cubs
Donn Pall, White Sox
Bob Parsons, Bears
Jack Perconte, Dodgers/White sox
Bill Pierce, Sox
Paul Popovich, Cubs
Mickey A. Pruitt, Bears/Cowboys
Willy Roy, International Hall of Fame Soccer
Brian Schaefering, Cowboys
Reggie Smith, Broncos
Eric Soderholm, White Sox
Al Weis, White Sox/Mets
Other event sponsors included AMS Mechanical, Anvil International, Architectureal Resources and Technologies, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Bob Korvas Agency, Certified Products Inc.,
Crane Energy, Great Lakes Copper, Hilton Chicago-Indian Lakes Resort, Hoopeston Emergency Medicine Specialists, HSBC, Kelly Pipe,
Law ElderLaw, Mass Mutual, The Medline Foundation, The Mutual Fund Store, New York Life, Pepsi Americas, RAM Mechanical, Polsinelli, The Rion Family, and Zimmerman Ford.