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Jimenez Open tees it up for Alzheimers
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Arlene Jimenez presents Deborah Heddendorf of the Alzheimers Association Coastal Region with a check for $12,000, the proceeds from the fourth annual David Jimenez Open golf tournament at Lost Plantation. They are joined by tournament committee members and volunteers. - photo by Photo by Paul Floeckher

A year after his death, David Jimenez continues to inspire others to support Alzheimer’s research and outreach.

The fourth annual David Jimenez Open golf tournament held earlier this month raised $12,000 for the Alzheimer’s Association Coastal Region. The tournament hosted by Lost Plantation Golf Club has totaled $42,645 in donations in its four years, according to Arlene Jimenez, David’s widow.

“That’s pretty amazing,” said Deborah Heddendorf, development director for the Alzheimer’s Association Coastal Region. “Taking their compassion for David and turning it into a passion for helping us has meant so much.”

David Jimenez battled Alzheimer’s disease for 14 years. He died of renal failure two weeks after last year’s tournament at age 74.

An avid golfer, David played professionally on the PGA Tour and European Senior Tour. Arlene considers the benefit tournament an ideal tribute to David, who loved spending time with family and friends and enjoyed being on the golf course as often as he could.

“It’s a fun tournament. The mood is just happy,” Arlene said.

This year, 90 golfers participated in the tournament. The team of Dennis Beahan, Howard Tomlinson, Michael Tomlinson and Johnny Warren took first place.

The proceeds will support Alzheimer’s Association services such as its 24-hour help line, 1-on-1 consultations, crisis intervention training and the Safe Alert program to locate someone with dementia who has wandered or become lost. The association also has local support groups, including one in Effingham that meets the second Tuesday of every month at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church.

“We just appreciate the community and how strong they come together” for the tournament, Heddendorf said.

David’s legacy will continue. Plans already are in the works for the fifth year of the David Jimenez Open.

“The committee is enthusiastically wanting to do the tournament again,” Arlene said.