Duran Golf Club honors veterans


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Duran Golf Club member and retired Air Force Chief Jerry McAnulty for the past three years has honored veterans with a special salute using a flag special made for the pin.

photo by George White

As an avid golfer, retired Air Force Chief Jerry McAnulty honored his fellow veterans on Veterans Day at Duran Golf Club.

For the third consecutive year, McAnulty stationed himself at the 11th green right next to the Duran Clubhouse. For that hole, he handled the pin, which has been equipped with a specially-made American flag purchased for the brief ceremony repeated for all golfers.

“The flag is displayed on the pin. As the players come up to the green, I make sure that they observe me because I’m in red, white and blue. I want to remove the pin from the cup. Unfortunately, normally when you remove the pin from the ground, you put it on the ground and you don’t want to do that with an American flag. I take the flag, move back out of the way and stand at parade rest, like we do in the military. I put the flag back in the cup and salute the flag and then I wait for the next group to come up. I do it from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.,’’ said McAnulty, 78, who enlisted in 1955.

The new Viera tradition came about when the Heritage Isle resident saw a group called Birdies For The Brave do the same thing.

“I kind of took the lead from them. Out of respect and honor for the veterans, I thought it would be a great thing to do here at Duran,’’ he said.

In addition to paying for the American flag for the event, Duran Golf Club also honors veterans with discounts, including free golf (players still have to pay the $22 cart fee) and reduced prices at the clubhouse restaurant.

“By giving them the discounts on Veterans Day, there’s going to be a lot of veterans here and then there’s just the regulars who play here and a lot of them are veterans,’’ he said.

McAnulty said he’s so encouraged by the response that he’s in it for the long haul.

“The golfers are 100 percent pleased with the event. They actually seem to be impressed with what’s going on because they’ve never seen it done before. I do it out of respect and honor for veterans, being one myself. I spent 28 years in active duty. I’m just very patriotic and I love to do this. I will do this as long as I’m alive because it’s been so well received,’’ he said.