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Suicide Prevention Program Benefits From Golf Tournament


For the fifth consecutive year, the Carbon Country Golf Course is hosting a public golf tournament Saturday to benefit Utah charities.

In 2009, Mike Ballard fatally slipped on ice. Now, The Carbon County Golf Course hosts an annual tournament in his honor, donating proceeds to local charities. The recipient this year is HOPE Squad, a suicide prevention program in Price.

Frank Ori, the director of recreation at the course, says the county received about a dozen applications from non-profit organizations. “I believe we were seventh in the nation in adult suicide, so it’s something that we feel very strongly about and so that’s why we went with the HOPE Squad,” Ori said.

The tournament began when the county wanted to host a tournament for employees, including Ballard’s wife, Linda. When no one signed up, the recreation department decided to make the event public.

Later, the county decided to give the $22,000 raised to Linda, to help cover her husband’s hospital bills. Ori said Linda is well-liked in the office and her husband was a great man, so they wanted to help out by monetarily supporting the family. Ever since, Linda has continued to help with the event, donating to a different charity each year.

The Mike Ballard Golf Tournament is scheduled for June 21 from 1 to 5 p.m. While the tournament itself is full, tickets are still available for the dinner and live entertainment.