Golden Knights parachute in with trophy at A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier

Army Emergency Relief

Golden Knights parachute in with trophy at A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier

PGA Tour

Golden Knights parachute in with trophy at A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier

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A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier opened the 2019-20 PGA Tour season.  Of course there was a lot of attention on the golf, but there was a significant U.S. military presence on site, with all five branches represented.

Dotting The Old White TPC Course in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, was a Blackhawk helicopter, an up-armored Humvee and an Armored Security Vehicle (ASV). In addition, on each green was an Army soldier tending the flagstick, which held an American flag.

The afternoon was highlighted by a performance by the Army Golden Knights, who jumped out of a C-31A troopship with the winner’s trophy in hand.

The jump crew on the C-31A was SFC Roman Grijalva, SFC Cory Rush, SSG Morgan George, SFC Josh Coleman, SGT John Stevens and SSG Dan Osorio. SFC Derrick Coleman coordinated the jump from the ground.

SFC Justin Runion piloted the plane with his crew consisting of CW3 Troy Emig and DAC Dave Clay.

Rush wore a Go Pro camera on his helmet while parachuting with the trophy. Once he hit the ground on No. 17, Rush held it up in celebration before handing it off to Grijalva, who then walked over to the 18th green to deliver it to Niemann.

The trophy delivery was the plane’s last jump before retirement.

A U.S. Army up-armored Humvee parked on The Old White TPC Course in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. (Photo: Army Emergency Relief)

Earlier in the day, at around lunchtime on the 18th green, the Army held a swearing-in for 45 new recruits, 40 from West Virginia and five from Virginia. Four-star General Paul E. Funk delivered the Oath of Enlistment. Several hundred people were on hand to witness the ceremony.

Recruits are typically inducted during smaller, often private, ceremonies just for family. The Oath of Enlistment is usually administered by a captain or a lieutenant. It’s believed this is the first-ever Army swearing-in a PGA Tour event.

One of the main benefactors of the tournament was the the Army Emergency Relief, was which was founded in 1942. The AER is the Army’s nonprofit organization “dedicated to providing emergency financial assistance to soldiers, retired soldiers and their families in times of distress.” The assistance includes interest-free loans, grants and scholarships. For information or to make a donation, go to aerhq.com.

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