COAST CITIES — In golf, the second round of play is called the back nine. At Operation Game On, a golf program for combat-injured soldiers, it’s known as WoW.
Rancho Santa Fe resident Tony Perez, founder of Operation Game On, created Wives of Warriors to help the spouses of troops who have returned from Operation Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom with severe physical and mental injuries and are undergoing rehabilitation at Naval Medical Center San Diego.
“The wives of our combat injured also suffer, especially when they say goodbye to their loved ones never knowing if they will ever see them again,” Perez said. “Then they suffer even more when they see their once strong and healthy young man return with severe mental and physical injuries.”
Participants in Operation Game On, which began in 2008, receive 10 one-hour golf lessons from PGA-certified instructors at Del Mar Golf Center, followed by a professional fitting session at The Kingdom at TaylorMade Golf.
They also get golf equipment that includes custom-fitted TaylorMade clubs, bags, Adidas shoes, gloves and balls, as well as playing opportunities throughout the county.
Through WoW, which started in September, their spouses will now also receive all necessary equipment and lessons from Michelle Mackall, a former LPGA player.
“The troops are very happy about this and the wives are so looking forward to learning, experiencing and enjoying the game of golf with their husbands for many years to come,” Perez said.
For more information or to donate to either program, contact Perez at firstname.lastname@example.org or (858) 832-1836.