The 2016 ParaLong Drive Cup Competitors - Knoxville, TV U.T.The 2016 ParaLong Drive Cup

The University of Tennessee in Knoxville hosted The 2016 ParaLong Drive Cup at the Day Golf Practice Facility. ParaLong Drive founder, Dean Jarvis was ecstatic when he first made the announcement that U.T. would be hosting his 2016 event. The event was held July 10th and 11th with an outstanding field of competitors.

ParaLong Drive grew out of Dean’s original organization, the Amputee Long Drive Championship. Dean saw the need to allow hitters with a variety of conditions the opportunity to compete. This year’s ParaLong Drive Cup had entries including: Below the knee single leg amputees; Below the knee double leg amputees; Above the knee single leg amputees; Single arm amputees; Traumatic brain injury; and Cerebral Palsy. “Deans organization kind of bridges the gap among the adaptive golf organizations,” said Kenny Green, Executive Director of the National Amputee Golf Association. “He’s opened the door so golfers with other disabilities can compete on the same stage. We support his organization, and he supports ours.”

A common theme among all the adaptive golf organizations, and evident from the interviews we conducted at the 2016 ParaLong Drive Cup, is the drive to have “disabled” golf to become part of the Paralympics. We very carefully use the word disabled here, because none of these competitors consider themselves disabled. We hear them refer to “able-bodied” golfers, but they would prefer “differently-abled” over disabled to describe their conditions. No matter what you call it, sadly it is not part of the 2016 Paralympics, and from all we’ve gathered has missed the opportunity to be part of the 2020 Paralympics. So, these dedicated competitors are focused in their drive to make it to the 2024  Paralympics.

The competition was really close this year. Even though the beautiful U.T. grid along the Tennessee River was fairly soft from recent rains, The ParaLong Drive Cup produced some of the best drama seen in any competition so far. ParaLong Drive titans Jared Brentz and Brendon Jacks engaged in another epic battle similar to the 2014 ParaLong Drive Nationals that went down to their last swings.

In the final round of their set Jacks and Brentz tied with drives of 334 yards. In a best-of-six ball playoff Brentz out drove Jacks with his last swing. You could see the expression on Jack’s face when the ball left Brentz’s club, as we spectators could tell by the sound….it was big. Jared Brentz won the playoff and a beautiful Rockwell watch.

Competition was really close among all the hitters. Here is how they finished:

University of Tennessee Mack & Jonnie Day Golf Facility Results
334 yards – Jared Brentz* (below-knee amputee)
334 yards – Brendon Jacks (below-knee amputee)
322 yards – Nick Stillwell** (below-knee amputee)
298 yards – Dr. Lucian Newman III** (arm amputee)
287 yards – Tracy Ramin (below-knee amputee)
281 yards – Josh Williams (below-knee amputee)
278 yards – Kenny Green (below-knee amputee)
278 yards – Steve Ehretsman (below-knee amputee)
268 yards – Dean Jarvis*** (above-knee amputee)
245 yards – Brian Woliver (traumatic brain injury)
239 yards – Humberto Reyna (traumatic brain injury)
222 yards – Daryl Rossi (one armed hitter)
190 yards – Tyler Bunn (cerebral palsy)
187 yards – Michael Yoder (one armed hitter)
* won 6 ball play-off
** hit on Sunday July 10th
*** hit on Tuesday July 12th

The 2016 ParaLongDrive Cup  is in the books, and founder / organizer, Dean Jarvis is already working on the 2017 event, as well as looking for other venues and sponsors to support his events. To keep up with Dean and all his efforts check out his website at http://www.amputeelongdrivechampionship.com and here at TGD. It is our pleasure to be associated with this organization and to provide more visibility for the cause.

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Name- Jared Brentz
Residence- Knoxville, TN
Family- Wife – Erin
Occupation- Security expert at Pilot Flying J
Golf organization affiliations- 7-time winner of ParaLong Drive events
Longest drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive events – 367 yards
Longest drive in other ParaLong Drive events –409 yards (Currently the longest drive in a ParaLong Drive event)
Athletic background- In high school, he was a four-year Letterman in both golf and wrestling
How you became injured- He is a twin and was born with “arthro – gryposis” and club feet
Favorite professional long driver- Jeff Crittenden

Name- Dr. Lucian Newman

From – Gadsden, Alabama

Family- Children – Walton Newman Vandervoort- SanDiego,      Lucian Newman IV- tuscaloosa , al

Occupation- Surgeon, Chairman BCBS Physician Advisory Board- CMO- Founder Vincari-medical software

Golf Organizations- National Amputee Golf Association

Notable Achievements- 9 National Championships in Amputee Golf

Longest drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive Championships – 297 Yards

Longest Drive in other ParaLong Drive Championships – 302 Yards

Notable Achievements- 2 time overall Senior Amputee national champion- 7 time Arm Amputee division National Champion- Top Ten Alabama state amateur 1985- 7 time champion Gadsden Country Club- Etowah County Sports Hall of Fame- 2 time All-State football (high school)  Lettered 5 sports in high school

How Injured- Injured hunting in tree stand 2005-left above elbow amputee

 

 

Name- Brendon Jacks
Residence- Phoenix, Arizona resident
Family- Wife – Jennifer
Children – Alivia 10 James 6
Occupation- Distribution supervisor, and Shipping & Receiving Inventory Supervisor
Golf organization affiliations- ParaLong Drive
Notable achievements- First ParaLong Drive athlete to crack the 400 – yard barrier
Runner-up in several ParaLong Drive events- 353 yards
Longest drive in other ParaLong Drive events- 401 yards
Athletic background- Was a prospect to get drafted into professional baseball as a hard-throwing right-handed pitcher who could throw in the low 90’s
How you became injured- Below-knee amputee from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
He is one of the most admired and respected athletes in ParaLong Drive, he has overcome drug and alcohol additions as a teen to become an inspiration to many
Favorite professional long driver- Tim Burke
Name- Humberto Reyna
Residence- Liberty, NC
Family- Wife-Kay Reyna
Children- Braxton 25, Rebecca 22, Kayli 18
Occupation- Disabled Retired State Trooper
Golf organization affiliations- Paralongdrive Cup, Siler City Country Club
Longest drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive events – 250 yards
Longest drive in other ParaLong Drive events – n/a
Athletic background- Right handed golfer prior to line of duty injury, switched to left handed golf
How you became injured – Sustained a traumatic brain injury along with multiple other injuries in the line of duty as a NC State Trooper on 11-23-2009. Was investigating a collision on the interstate and was rear ended at 75mph.
Favorite professional long driver- Pat Dempsey
Name- Daryl Rossi
Residence- Santa Rosa Ca
Family- Wife: April Children- Vince and Dante Grandchildren- Liam
Occupation- Fiber Optic Engineer for Comcast
Golf organization affiliations- NCGA Member WAGA Member,
Home Course- Oakmont GC Santa Rosa
Longest drive in ParaLong Drive event-222 yards First Long Drive Event
How you became injured- Birth Defect
Athletic background- 9 handicap golfer, played in 2 WAGA Tournaments 3rd place Low net overall 1st low gross arm division,
High School Varsity Letter in Baseball, Golfing since age 12, Oakmont GC 2 man best ball Champions
27 years playing Competitive Men’s Softball …Slow and Fast Pitch, Favorite pastime Playing Golf with my Wife and Sons
Favorite professional long driver- Ryan Winther
Name- Tyler Bunn
Residence- Knoxville, TN
Family- Mom – Joan, Dad – David , Twin Brother – Davis, Older brother – Brandon
Occupation- Student at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Golf organization affiliations- Paralong Drive
Longest drive at University of Tennessee ParaLong Drive event –  190 yards (1 arm)
Longest drive at Tennessee National ParaLong Drive event – 223 yards (1 arm)
Athletic background- I have been playing golf since I was about 10 years old. I played my best golf during high school, and I try to play and practice as much as I can.
How you became injured- Born with Cerbral Palsy
Favorite professional long driver- Jason Zuback
Name- Josh Williams
Residence- Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
Family- Only child, mother Linda and Father Duane
Occupation- Mobile Service Carrier for Canada Post
Golf organization affiliations- Canadian Amputee Golf Association
Notable accomplishments- Semi-finalist in several ParaLong Drive events
Longest drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive events –327 yards
Longest drive in other ParaLong Drive events – 340 yards
Athletic background- 2 time National Champion in USA Amputee Golf, 4 time Canadian National Champion, and 1 South African Disabled Golf Championship. 3 time Michigan state Amputee Golf Champion
More Athletic background- Ranked 15th in the world for 100m and 200m T44 class in 1999 at age 14.
How you became injured- fell out of our family boat at our cottage in July 1991 at age 6. The propeller caused enough damage to require amputation.
Favorite professional long driver- Jason Zuback 5 time World Long Drive Champion 1996-1999 and 2006
Name- Nick Stilwell
Residence- Ocala, FL
Family- Parents John & Susie Stilwell
Occupation- President and Founder of the Never Say Never Foundation, and Ossur Americas Product Champion
Golf Organization Affiliations- AGA member
Longest Drive at Tennessee ParaLong Drive events- 322 yards
Longest Drive other events: n/a
Athletic Background- Played baseball, football, and wrested in high school. Golf recreationally since I was 13. Play competitive softball now and stay active as possible.
How you became injured- Fell out of a bus and got ran over losing both my legs below the knee. That was 8 years ago today 7/10, how awesome ist that I get to compete on this day!!!?
Favorite professional long driver-Tim Burke
Name- Tracy Ramin
Residence- Montrose, MI resident
Family- Girlfriend – Sophia Bong
Children – Cruz Ramin Active Duty Army and Jules Ramin senior in high school
Occupation- golf instructor teaching pro
Golf organization affiliations-National Amputee Golf Association, USAGA, Board member MICHIGAN Amputee Golf Association
Notable achievements- Semi-finalist in several ParaLong Drive events
Longest drive – 307 yards (Mesquite, NV)
Athletic background- Winner of the MAGA state tournament – 2010 and 2012. Played basket ball all through high school still schools best team
How you became injured- Was hit as a pedestrian by a pickup traveling 80mph
Favorite professional long driver-Tim Burke
Name- Brian Woliver
Residence- Kingsport, TN
Family- Wife – Jana Woliver Son – Brently Woliver
Occupation – Medically Retired U. S. Marine Corp
Golf Organization Affiliations – Salute Military Golf Association
Longest Drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive Events – 245 First event
Athletic background – Played football since I was 6 until graduating High School. I also wrestled throughout my teen years.
How you became injured – Improvised Explosive Device ( roadside bomb) resulting in Traumatic Brain Injury.
Favorite Professional Long Driver – Jamie Sadlowski
Name- Dean Jarvis
Residence- Maryville, TN
Family- Girlfriend – Shawna Williams   Children – Will and Thomas
Occupation- State Farm agent
Golf organization affiliations- National Amputee Golf Association, and USAGA
Longest drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive events – 272 yards
Longest drive in other ParaLong Drive events – 310 yards
Athletic background-Averaged 24.5 PPG in high school basketball before contracting cancer, and hit over .400 in high school baseball after contracting cancer and reconstruction of fused left leg
How you became injured- Fractured left knee from a fall playing basketball, temporarily fused left leg which led to above-knee amputation soon after
Favorite professional long driver- Bart Hartsell
Name- Kenny Green
Residence- Smyrna, TN
Family- Wife – Christie Children – Aiden and Myles
Occupation- Patient Care Coordinator at Fourroux Prosthetics
Golf organization affiliations-National Amputee Golf Association, Southern Amputee Golf Association, National Wheelcats, and USAGA
Runner-up at the inaugural Amputee Long Drive Championship
Longest drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive events – 344 yards
Athletic background- 5 time National Champion in USA Amputee Golf, and 1 Canadian National Championship, Former Middle Tennessee State University golfer, led the team in scoring his Senior year
How you became injured- Congenital birth defect
Favorite professional long driver- Will Hogue
Name- Steve Ehretsman
Residence- Atlanta, GA
Family- Never been married and no children, yet
Occupation- Founder & CEO, Shamrock Prosthetics Inc in Athens, GA
Golf organization affiliations- Longest drive in Tennessee ParaLong Drive events – 278 yards 1st event
Longest drive in other ParaLong Drive events – n/at
Athletic background- Captain of Boston University basketball team.
How you became injured – In 2001, was crushed between two cars walking into a fast food restaurant in Atlanta. 13 surgeries later, underwent a Below knee amputation in 2002
Favorite professional long driver- Dean Jarvis for starting all of this, and Dustin Johnson on PGA Tour