THEDFORD, ONT. – Just moments before golfers set out for another round at another charity tournament, Marty Meadows ensured everyone knew why that day was different.
Under a stunning blue sky and with the aid of a crackling PA system, Meadows helped put the festivities in perspective for the gathering of car dealers, suppliers and industry personalities about to hit the links.
“Tomorrow would have been Kaeden’s birthday,” CarProof’s V-P of data acquisition and strategic accounts and chair of the Kaeden Brown Foundation said.
“And he is why we are all here; we’re working to keep his memory alive.”
The 2014 installment of the annual charity golf tournament was another smash success for organizers. Held June 20, participants helped raise over $55,000 for the Kaeden Brown Foundation (KBF).
The foundation was set up in honour of Kaeden Brown. The seven-year-old was killed in a tragic ATV accident in September 2009 at his family farm. He was the son of Darren and Maryellen Brown who are Meadows’ best friends.
The big-hearted Meadows said the best way to ensure Kaeden’s name was never forgotten was to start a foundation to help kids. The golf tournament evolved as a fundraising tool for the KBF and has enjoyed an amazing amount of success in its first five years.
KBF’s annual golf outing has become so popular that organizers had to expand it to a second golf course this year. The 264 golfers who played were spread across Widder Station Golf Club in Thedford, Ont. and at nearby Arkona Fairways roughly an hour west of London.
Meadows described the level of support as “surreal.”
“To see so many industry partners that have become friends and now those friends have become part of the KBF family makes me truly humbled and so thankful,” he said.
Funds used this year provided Amy McIntyre with a post-secondary school scholarship and will be used to fund upgrades to a local arena.
Money raised at past events has funded the construction of a splash pad in Arkona and $50,000 playground at Bosanquet Central School, among other things.
When asked what he thought about the turnout and how it reflects on the auto industry, Meadows said that for a group that gets unfairly labeled sometimes, “nobody steps up more than the auto industry when the chips are down.”
Kaeden Brown would have turned 12 on June 21.
For more information about the Kaeden Brown Foundation or to donate, visit www.thekaedenbrownfoundation.com