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Golf tournament helps keep Romine's memory alive

Posted Monday, September 13, 2010, at 8:29 AM

Want to play golf and support a scholarship that helps students further their education? Sign up for the Louie Romine Memorial Scholarship Golf Tournament.

The annual event will kick off at 1 p.m. on Sept. 24 at the Phil Harris Golf Course in Linton. Cost is $20 -- $10 goes toward the scholarship, while the other $10 goes into the prize pool. Donations will also be accepted.

Romine, who was a multi-sport athlete, was killed in a car accident in May 1991. He had just completed his sophomore year at Shakamak High School.

The golf tournament started in 2003, according to Mark Jernigan, a 1992 graduate of Shakamak High School and friend of Romine.

"The tourney was started for multiple reasons. We wanted to give people a chance to get together that were home early (for Jasonville's annual homecoming celebration) and wanted to hang out and have some fun. It also gives the people who don't play softball (in the annual alumni softball tournament) something to look forward to," Jernigan said. "Mainly though it gave us a way to honor our friend and throw a few dollars towards the scholarship at the school."

Jernigan continued, "Coach (Chip) Sweet, Pam (Sweet) and the athletic boosters have made sure that the scholarship isn't going anywhere, which is great. But we wanted to show support for it somehow, so we came up with this idea."

The first two scholarships were awarded in 1993, the year Romine would have graduated. Funds raised from this year's golf tournament will help ensure the scholarship and Romine's memory lives on.

"The decision to start a scholarship came about because we wanted something good to come out of tragic situation," said Chip Sweet, a teacher and baseball coach at Shakamak. "Frank and Sarah (Romine's parents) lost one of their sons and this scholarship allows everyone, at least one time a year, to know who Louie Romine was and to realize that Louie was a Laker just like them. That was my first year as head baseball coach at Shakamak and I must say that tragedy has had a great impact on how much I really appreciate all the hard work my players put into the program for me and their school."

Every year since 1993, the scholarship has been awarded to the top male and female athletes. The most recent recipients were Billy Newton and Casey Fougerousse.

"The recipients are voted and chosen by all the varsity coaches since they know the kids better than anyone. We ask that the recipients are definitely going to further their education because we don't want the money to be spent on other 'things'," Sweet said.

Everyone is encouraged to sign up for the golf tournament, regardless of their golfing skills.

"Everyone is invited to play no matter how good or bad a golfer they are," Jernigan said. "It's small in comparison to most golf outings but it's a big deal to the people involved."

Past winners of the Louie Romine Memorial Scholarship Golf Tournament include:

2003 -- Nate Rawlings and Rob Wheat

2004 -- Nate Rawlings and Rob Wheat

2005 -- BA Shipman and Travis Walters

2006 -- Rod Wilson and Eric Griffith

2007 -- Sonny Romine and Charlie Farmer

2008 -- Rod Wilson and Jeff Barton

2009 -- Rod Wilson and Jeff Barton

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I love this story. Thanks Halea! ~Leslie

-- Posted by snapshots on Thu, Sep 16, 2010, at 10:20 PM

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