Pro-Am golfer Scott Stallings: Working with wounded soldiers is 'life changing'

Scott Stallings
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Scott Stallings has earned three tournament titles during his PGA career, but his proudest moment is teaching Army veterans how to play golf.
By
Matt Trowbridge
Rockford Register Star, Ill.

Series: Golf Buzz

Published: Friday, July 14, 2017 | 10:14 a.m.

Scott Stallings has won $8.4 million in his seven years on the PGA tour, including three tournament titles.

But his greatest golf thrill, he says, is not winning the 2011 Greenbrier Classic. Nor the 2012 True South Classic. Nor the 2014 Farmers Insurance Open.

His top golf moment is teaching Army veterans how to golf as part of the Wounded Warriors project, something he has been involved in for 10 years. His first time was during a Web.com Tour event near Fort Gordon, Georgia.

"I had the opportunity to give golf lessons to guys who were wounded in Iraq. It was life changing," said Stallings, who will play in Monday's Rockford Pro-Am at Rockford Country Club. Public parking is at Boylan High School, with shuttles running to the course every half-hour.

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"I had the opportunity to teach people to do things I do every single day, to see how much they got into it and to see it give them a break from what they are dealing with, being physically injured, mentally injured or both. I got to see golf give them an outlet from the day-to-day recovery they were on."

The PGA Tour, and even golf's minor league tours, get involved in charities at each of their tour stops. Stallings is often first in line to volunteer.

"I feel I have been given an incredible opportunity to live out my dream on tour," said Stallings, 32, who has also been involved with Fellowship for Christian Athletes since he was in college. "I don't want to take that for granted. I want to pour back in the communities we are part of week-in and week-out on tour."

And his favorite cause is the U.S. military.

"I have always been incredibly appreciative of the military," Stallings said in a phone interview. "My father-in-law was in the Marines and my brother-in-law was in Iraq in the Army. I know what my wife dealt with and the aftereffect, both mental and physical, that comes with serving in a war. That brings a reality we don't often get to see here.

"I do whatever we need to do, whether it's golf lessons, playing with them or getting a chance to speak with them. I've learned a lot about the power of the human spirit seeing the way these guys go about their day."

Stallings is having a somewhat modest season this year with $542,000 in earnings, but has made five of his last six cuts. His only top-10 finish this year was an 8th-place finish back in January.

"I've been fairly consistent," he said. "The putter just needs to cooperate. The margin of error is not very big out here. A few more putts go in and we will be right where we need to be."

This article is written by Matt Trowbridge from Rockford Register Star, Ill. and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.