Everyone wins when you bet on our healthcare workers

As any golfer will tell you, making friendly wagers is a big part of the game. In sharing the sport with my 12-year-old son, Pete, he’s taken to this tradition too – for better or worse, I guess.

But one thing’s for sure, his latest golf wager was undoubtedly a huge win, even for the “loser.” Here’s the story …

We’re quarantined in North Carolina, where Pete has kept up a rigorous practice schedule at Pinehurst while also finishing up the sixth grade. Pete is a competitive junior golfer with more than 50 wins across the country at the age of 12.

It has been fun and fulfilling to watch the way he continues to push himself and train while keeping up with online school, and adjusting to the new normal. One way to keep the days interesting is to create new challenges for ourselves, and Pete set his sights on a pretty serious challenge for a middle schooler.

A friendly wager

After seeing Sam “Riggs” Bozoian – host of the very popular Fore Play golf podcast – around Pinehurst, Pete decided to challenge him to a round of golf where the loser has to buy lunch for local first responders at FirstHealth of the Carolinas.

Pete and I took to Twitter and challenged Riggs to compete from the same tees, same distance. After being called out by a 12-year-old, the 33-year-old Riggs had no choice but to accept the challenge. The match took place on May 1 and was broadcast live on social media to the 575k followers of Riggs and his Fore Play crew.

After a nervous start to the match with producers, cameras, newscasters, and a gallery of fans, Pete settled into his game and played his last 10 holes at even par and was victorious.  He ultimately defeated Riggs on the 16th hole, 3 and 2 in the match play format.

A great sport

Riggs was a great sport, classy in defeat, and very gracious. Today, he’s honoring the bet by providing lunch to the real champions – 128 frontline health care heroes at FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital. The hospital system’s more than 5,000 employees and medical staff serve patients across 15 counties in the mid-Carolinas.

They’re the first line of defense for our community in treating COVID-19, so turning this golf match into something bigger felt good for all of us.

So good, in fact, my team at Hyland wanted to get in on the action. As you might know, we’ve recently started working with PGA TOUR golfer Xander Schauffele as our brand ambassador.

Since Pete is still a junior with a lot of amateur golf ahead of him, we can’t exactly sign him as our next pro golfer. So instead, we’re going to honor his victory by making a $10,000 donation to The Foundation of FirstHealth’s COVID-19 Response Fund.

The fund is dedicated to supporting workers on the front lines at FirstHealth. That means providing resources for necessities like masks, ventilators, face shields – many produced locally by volunteers – as well as access to the latest treatments and technology.

An important cause

“We are extremely enthused to receive this generous gift from Hyland. As a result, we’ll be better equipped to meet the ongoing needs of our dedicated first responders,” said Kathy Stockham, president of the Foundation of FirstHealth. “We are working hard to connect our team with the resources, supplies, meals and more that make their job possible. The collective support from our community is very meaningful.”

So what started as a challenge on the golf course has turned into a more important cause, helping those facing the very real challenge of COVID-19.

While I was initially proud of Pete for pushing himself competitively, I’m most proud of the way Hyland, Riggs and our larger community are coming together to support our health care heroes when they need it most. It’s a good reminder why I work for Hyland, and why we’re always trying to be good partners.

You never know when it can turn into something bigger.

Mike Myers

Mike Myers

Mike Myers is vice president of global sales at Hyland and a founding member of the Hyland Healthcare division. Mike has worked at Hyland for 19 years and his golf... read more about: Mike Myers

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