DUBLIN, OH (WCMH) – There are people at the Memorial Golf Tournament wearing yellow pullover shirts. Some are giving fans directions, others are operating the scoreboards at the greens.
All of these folks are volunteers.
Michele Joseph takes a one-week vacation annually to volunteer at the golf tournament.
“We all do it the benefit Nationwide Children’s Hospital,” she said.
This is Joseph’s 21st year at the tournament. Her day job consists of organizing meetings and events for L Brands. Basically, she’s doing her job for free during this week.
She’s working with logistics, people, and juggling all the moving parts of the volunteers.
“We have volunteers that come from Dayton, Cincinnati, and all the way from Oregon,” said Joseph.
She jumped on a golf cart and wove through the fans who crowded the fairways, greens, and pathways, to be able to get to her volunteers. She wanted to recognize two of them for their longevity.
Dennis Day has served here for a decade because he loves watching the competition, while fellow volunteer Peggy Kolodziej received her five-year pin.
Kolodziej said she volunteers because golf is important to the community.
Joseph explained that all of the volunteer hours are important.
“Our hours equate to a donation to Nationwide Children’s Hospital at the end of the year,” said Joseph.
Her reason for volunteering started 21 years ago during her first year at the tournament. She got a phone call about her son who was ill.
“We had to rush him to Children’s,“ Joseph said. “We were given,’Your son’s not gonna make it through the night,’ and by luck, somebody from the Boston Children’s Hospital was there from nephrology and asked if we wanted to be a part of an experimental treatment.”
Her son was there as an eight-year-old and is 29-years-old today, living and working in New York City.
“I was one of the lucky ones,“ said Joseph.
“I can’t write a check to Children’s Hospital to repay them for what they give us, which is my son, but I can surely be here every single year and give them my time,” Joseph said with tears building up in her eyes. “I’ll be back every year as long as I can breathe.”