Sudbury for Wounded Warriors started as a discussion among friends during games of poker over the course of a few years subsequent to 9/11. Brendan Mahoney, Bob Haarde and a group of friends would bat around ideas about what could be done to help. We all have our own reasons and motivation for doing something to help and here are some of ours.. Brendan's brother, Brian, is an active Marine Harrier Pilot who signed up for Marine Officer Candidate School shortly after 9/11 and has served several tours of duty. Brendan's father was a Marine and his Grandfather was an Army Colonel who served in WWII and stormed the beaches of Normandy on D-Day. Bob's father was a Gun Captain on the USS Alabama and a Navy Deep Sea Diver in WWII who enlisted the day he heard Pearl Harbor was attacked. Bob also has a cousin who enlisted in the Army post 9/11 and has been deployed to Iraq. When fellow Sudbury resident Army Ranger Lt. Scott Milley was killed in action in Afghanistan, the desire to help out really hit home.
Brendan was inspired when he first heard the Wounded Warrior Project explained by Television News Anchor and former White House Spokesman Tony Snow. Bob was inspired when he heard PGA Golfer Phil Mickelson explain his support for the "Birdies for the Brave" project by saying: "Look, we are not serving, but we can do something to help." After several years of discussing ideas, action was finally taken and the First Annual Drive Fore Our Troops golf tournament took place on September 6, 2011 and raised $10,000 which was donated to the Wounded Warrior Project and was highlighted by a moving speech by Lt. Cameron Kerr, 101st Airborne Division, who lost part of his leg due to an IED explosion on February 16, 2011.
We chose the name "Sudbury for Wounded Warriors" because it was easy and descriptive at the time and have contemplated changing it because our reach is now well beyond Sudbury. We are receiving donations and offers of support from friends and complete strangers from all over. We had a volunteer contact us because her friend, who was a Navy Seal, was killed in action. Although we are proud to have the word Sudbury in our name which represents the beginning of this effort and ties us to the history of Sudbury which goes back to King Philip Metacomet of Pokonoket and John Grout of the 1600s, Josiah Haynes and all the minuteman and militia who mustered for the Battles of Lexington and Concord, we recognize and solicit support and participation from everywhere.