|Adam Marshall takes aim during the Katie Fisher Scholarship Golf Scramble in London.|
Eleven years after it started, the Katie Fisher FFA Scholarship Golf Scramble is still going strong—stronger, in fact.
The event, held at Hickory Grove Golf Course in London, annually brings in $3,000 to $3,500. This year, the total is over $3,700.
"We got extremely lucky with hole sponsors and raffles this year," said London resident Tom Fisher, who with his wife, Jayne, started the scramble in tribute to their daughter, Katie Fisher, who died in 1995 at age 18 from Burkitt’s lymphoma.
The scramble’s proceeds fund scholarships for Madison-Plains High School FFA members. Since its inception in 1996, the Katie Fisher Scholarship Founda-tion has awarded over $22,500 to 32 graduating seniors. This year’s recipi-ents were Kelly Huston and Courtney McKenzie.
"The support for this event is what makes it unique," said Jon Henry, an advisor for Madison-Plains’ 240-student FFA chapter. "The fact that it’s been going on for 11 years and continues to grow really says something."
This year, 30 four-person teams played in the scramble on Sept. 15. Over 50 FFA students helped with concessions, registration, set-up and tear-down. Twenty-seven companies and individuals signed up as sponsors.
"We bring two teams each year. We’ve only missed coming one time," said Ron Sexton, who travels from Gallipolis with seven other golfers for the scramble. "We have won a couple of times, but it’s not about winning. It’s about supporting a good cause and having fun."
This year’s winners included Ed Caudill’s team from southern Ohio in the morning. The winning team in the afternoon was made up of four Madison-Plains’ graduates, all of whom were FFA members: Kevin Daniels, Doug Finney, Adam Marshall and Johnny Oiler. The scramble also rewards the last-place finishers, which this year were Phil Holdren’s team and Charlie Pierson’s team, both from central Ohio.
Among the many other faithful participants are Katie Fisher’s uncles, Ken Fisher and Greg Fisher. Ken flies in from Massachusetts. Greg flies in from Colorado. Greg said the only time he didn’t make the scramble was in 2001, when he was stuck in an airport due to the terrorist attacks of 9/11.
When the Fishers started the event, they relied primarily on family members to run it. The family continues to play a big role, but now FFA students are an integral part of the day, too.
"The family and the advisors are out here, but it’s mostly the kids. We get them to do as much as possible because it’s for them," said Jayne Fisher.
The sponsors for the 2007 scramble were as follows: Advantage Bank, American Bottling Co., Bill and Mary Fisher, Bob Evans Farms, Buckeye Ford, Columbus Bluejackets, Columbus Clippers, Columbus Crew, Fred and Vera Robison, Gene and Ruth Fisher, Golfsmith, Gordon Food Service, Hickory Grove Golf Course, Holland Builders, J&J Excavating, JS Custom Graphics, London Animal Hospital, Marathon Pipeline, Marathon Transportation, M.H. Eby, Mid-City Electric, Patrick Phillips (attorney), Rick’s Carryout, Rustic Realm, Stanley Electric, Texas Roadhouse and Wilson Printing & Graphics.
"We have become friends with the people who support us and come every year. They know I’m going to push them to buy things, like raffle items and t-shirts," Tom Fisher said. "Hopefully, we can keep pushing it and help more young people."