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HAPfan foundation to help golfers in Long, Liberty
Mabel Creel - photo by Photo provided.

Mabel Creel loved to play golf, and play golf she did. If anyone has ever played a round of golf in this area, especially at the Cherokee Rose Country Club, they know of Creel. The right-hander played golf for more years than she could remember and even during the last days of her life, she encouraged her friends and family by telling them, "You have to play the ball where it lies."

Because Creel was such an inpiration to people in her life, her family is doing its part to continue her legacy by creating the HAPfan Golf Foundation in Creel’s honor.

According to her daughter, Elise Stafford, the foundation was created to keep Creel’s passion for golf alive and to help future generations of young golfers.

"The foundation will provide golf equipment and monetary resources through scholarships to young golfers in Liberty and Long counties," Stafford said.

The funds will be awarded to students who attend both public and private schools and, in addition to scholarships, the foundation will pay for young people to attend golf camps.

Stafford said the foundation’s name stems from her mother’s nickname.

"It was my mother’s nickname simply because she played with a set of custom made Hogan’s Apex Plus irons. It just seemed fitting to name the foundation HAPfan."

She added, "The HAPfan Golf Foundation represents a true golfer’s spirit, with a desire to advance the game and make a difference in the lives of others."

According to Stafford, the foundation is a nonprofit organization and its board of directors includes Tammy Ballance, Robert Creel Jr., Sonja Duncan, Rosby Frasier, Verdell Jones, Catherine Patat and Stafford.

Its first tournament, a four-person scramble, is scheduled for Aug. 8 at the Cherokee Rose Country Club. The entry fee is $60 per person or $240 for a team, which includes two mulligans and a meal after the tournament.

There will be a 50/50 raffle and cash prizes for the first-, second- and third-place teams. There also will be four hole-in-one prizes given away, including a 2009 Harley Davidson motorcycle and a vacation to Emerald Golf Links in Atlantic City. Sponsorships are available now for $100, $250 and $500.

For more player or sponsor information about the tournament, call Stafford at (912) 977-2157 or e-mail

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