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Shortly after noon Friday, golfers teed off across all 18 holes at the Williamsburg Golf Club to kick off the inaugural Playing for Trevor Memorial Golf Tournament.
The tournament was held in the honor of late Jamestown golfer Trevor Times, who drowned in May 2012 while trying to swim across College Creek.
Golfers young and old were brought together on a pristine day to honor the memory of Times, raise money for charity and celebrate the sport Times devoted years to playing.
The tournament drew about 120 participants between the adult and student divisions, which included current Jamestown coaches, Times' former teammates at Jamestown and local golf enthusiasts looking to get in a round of golf for a good cause.
Before the tournament officially got underway, Jamestown golf coach Doug Meredith grabbed a microphone and thanked those participating in the sold-out event.
He spoke about the legacy of Times, whom he coached, not only as a talented golfer, but also as an open and inviting person who seemed to bring out the best in those around him.
The Playing for Trevor Memorial Golf Tournament seemed to bring out the best of those participating in the tournament, as well. Despite losing her son three years ago, Dr. Virginia Wells could be seen laughing and smiling throughout the day.
Simply playing in the tournament, she admitted afterward, was something she could not have managed as recently as a year ago. Friday's tournament proved therapeutic for Wells and the rest of Times' friends and family.
"This was an idea that was introduced very shortly after his passing, and we were not ready for that. It was just too difficult," she said. "The pain has softened and so now we are able to celebrate him and remember the good. So this has been great. It's a way to just remember him and smile about it."
At the tournament's reception dinner, Wells gave a passionate eight-minute speech after a tribute video created and edited by Times' sister, Kelsey. During her speech, Wells read aloud a note from Brady Holcomb – a recent recipient of the Trevor Times Memorial Scholarship that gives a $5,000 award annually to a Jamestown senior – that thanked the Times family for their generosity and ability to help others after an event that took an emotional toll.
"I can't imagine how difficult it must have been to lose someone of that character," the note read. "It doesn't feel right being given a scholarship that wouldn't exist if not for your loss."
The ability to transform suffering into something positive is something that has sustained Wells throughout the grieving process. Friday's first Playing for Trevor Memorial Golf Tournament, which Wells is planning on continuing, appears to be the next step in helping others in memory of Trevor.
Thanks to a silent auction held throughout the duration of the tournament, Wells estimates almost $20,000 was raised for the Trevor Times Memorial Scholarship Fund, which helps fund an East Carolina University athletics endowment, the annual Jamestown scholarship and the First Tee, an organization that helps introduce underprivileged youths to the expensive sport of golf.
Ultimately, she hopes money raised from the tournament will continue helping kids play the sport of golf, attend college and, most importantly, accomplish their life goals.
"It's all about helping young people pursing education and golf," she said. "It's all about helping kids in this community. It was fun raising the money, it'll be even more fun giving it away. I can't wait."