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Golf tourney continues educational legacy
Hank White, penchant for supporting students remembered at annual event
From left: Rebecca Woods of Liberty County High School; master’s candidate and Brunswick High School Principal Samuel Wilson; tournament chairwoman Josephine White; Bradley Brice of Liberty County High School; and Justin Leachman of Bradwell Institute pose Saturday in front of a prize pickup during the fourth annual Henry ‘Hank’ White Scholarship Golf Tournament. Woods, Wilson, Brice, Leachman and Latasha Williams (not pictured) won scholarships. - photo by By Patty Leon / Coastal Courier
Everyone who remembers Henry “Hank” White says the same thing. He loved children and was committed to helping students further their education. This legacy was celebrated Saturday morning during the Henry “Hank” White Golf Tournament at Cherokee Rose Country Club.
"I think it's a blessing that they hold this tournament in his honor," Josephine White, widow and tournament chairwoman, said. "I know that he is smiling down at us from Heaven. I just want to continue to help people further their education."
White was the chairman of the deacons board at First Calvary Missionary Baptist Church and was the state chaplain for the Veterans of Foreign Wars. His wife said he traveled the state with the church and organization doing whatever he could to help the children attain better education.
The golf tournament, entering its fourth year, has already awarded 17, $1,000 scholarships. The awards are given to college bound students and to members of the community going back to college. This year Rebecca Woods,
Justin Leachman, Bradley Brice and Latasha Williams received scholarship awards. Samuel Wilson, the current principal of Brunswick High School, applied and received the community award as he returns to school to complete his Masters.
"Folks come from Statesboro, Savannah, Richmond Hill they just come from all over and support us," Josephine White said.
"We get our drive and our energy by knowing that God has required us, those of us who are fortunate, to help others so we all get together and play golf," Tournament Director Derrick Taylor said. "But we know the most important thing is to help the youth of the community with the scholarships."
Taylor said the success of the tournament is evident and the event gets larger every year.
"Every year we have to turn back participants because it so popular within the community and we have to close out registration when we reach our peak," he said. "All the schools and businesses get very involved and community wide they are aware of what we do and every year it gets larger and larger.'
The tournament offers the scholarships based on the amount of the proceeds received. Taylor said it's up to the students and community to apply for the scholarships, which does have a set critieria for eligibility.
"They have to be college bound, maintain a C average and commit to writing a 500 word essay," he said. "We don't grade the essay, we hire a separate committee to do that but if they meet that criteria then they are allowed to get the scholarship. They can use that for whatever they need, books, transition, housing and clothes. Once they present their transcripts and prove that they are enrolled they can use the scholarship funds for any purpose they need."
Sinclair Thorne pastor of First Calvary Missionary Baptist Church said White's reach for a high education is something his church plans to recognize with something more than just the golf tournament.
"He was committed and faithful to the cause of the church and Christ," he said. "He believed in progression and he believed in education and that is the reason for this scholarship. We are getting ready to erect an education building and we plan to call it The Henry "Hank" White Education Center."
They will offer Bible Studies, Evangelist Explosion Outreach Ministries and a drug rehabilitation program.
Tournament results
First place winner with a score of 57
Keith Royal
Robert Wyrick
Ed Habel
Lairo Robinson

Second place with a 58
John Floyd
Ben Floyd
Jordan Roberson
Nick Babb

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