By Heather Vita - April 15, 2017
As time marches on, things inevitably change. Especially when you consider a time span of thirty years.
But one thing that hasn’t changed is the fond memories and respect people have for a beloved member of the Thunder Bay community – Frank Cava.
Frank passed away from a heart attack, yet his legacy has lived on through the London Life Frank Cava Memorial Golf Tournament, held each summer for the past thirty years. Frank’s brother Jim said, “No matter who you were, Frank made you feel like a friend. He was welcoming, warm and wise.”
Mark Bruzzese, Chair of the Organizing Committee for the tournament for the past fifteen years added, “Frank would have loved what this tournament has become; it would have been right up his alley. Men coming together and supporting our community in a meaningful way – I know he would be so proud of what we’ve achieved.”
The London Life Frank Cava Memorial Golf Tournament celebrated a milestone thirty years in 2016, raising over $500,000 for local charities in our community in its history, including close to $200,000 for the Hospital in areas such as cancer and cardiac care. It’s a fun-filled day where there are many laughs and lots of fun. “It’s a real family-type environment,” said Bruzzese. “One of the best things we’ve seen recently is that the next generation is coming through. It’s our kids who are taking up this initiative and keeping this tournament, and its community impact, alive.”
This year’s tournament planning is already well underway with the date set for July 22 at the beautiful Whitewater Golf Club. Registration is by invitation only – as Bruzzese explained, “Some of the beauty of this event is in its exclusivity because the same people come back year after year. The camaraderie is special ; we have people return to town solely for this tournament. There’s something about it you just can’t explain.”
Bruzzese added, “Hosting this tournament in memory of Frank is only possible because of the generous corporate sponsorships we receive. Our long-time presenting sponsor – Great West Life, London Life and Canada Life knows the value this tournament brings to our city and their sponsorship truly embodies their goal of building stronger communities. We are very much indebted to them and to many other sponsors who play a critical role in putting together this tournament and allowing the funds to go to areas where they can have real impact in our city.”
Concluded Bruzzese, “Frank enhanced our community in so many ways while he was alive. This event allows him to continue his legacy.”