PLAINFIELD — He can be found at a slew of golf outings near you, or really anywhere he’s needed, raising money for the Wounded Warrior Project while trying to get people to Smile, it’s Golf!
That’s the title of Tom Hilligoss’ book. Hilligoss, 78, is a long-time certified golf instructor who spent 2000-09 as a Plainfield assistant golf coach and is currently Plainfield’s middle school girls’ golf coach.
He’s not out to make money from his tales, calling it “a free golf book with a $10 tax deductible donation to the Wounded Warrior Project.”
“I’m retired. I don’t need an income,” he said. “I already checked, and if I sold it, I’d have to collect sales tax and I don’t want to do that. Everything in it, all the stories are true, stories that include Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson. I’m looking to gain invites to golf outings or wherever to raise money for the project.”
The book is a collection of both golf stories and poems designed at helping cure common ailments that befell golfers while teaching lessons, something he learned how to do as a coach of the game.
“I found out coaching that you can teach kids something today and they’ll forget it tomorrow, so I started putting instruction into poetry,” he said. “I’ve got instructional, motivational, and tongue in cheek poems, and if you’re a golfer you’ll realize the poems are true. There are poems about posture, grip, how to hit a fade, how to hit a draw, lots of different things.”
Hilligoss says that you need not be a golfer to enjoy the book.
“Even if you don’t play golf, if you don’t smile reading this book, then you don’t have a sense of humor,” he said.
Hilligoss was recently at an outing at Twin Bridges Golf Club in Danville where he was able to raise $110 and has done a few more appearances. He sends the money to Topeka, Kan., for the Wounded Warriors Project.
“I’m just trying to raise money for people that need it,” he said. “They deserve it badly. They’re quite a group.”
Additionally, the book can be checked out at the Plainfield-Guilford Township Public Library. He has also given to other charities since it was written.
“I’ve done some fund raising for St. Mark’s Food Pantry in Plainfield,” Hilligoss said. “As a matter of fact, I’ve given a number of lessons at Oak Tree and they asked me who to make out a check to, and I said to make it out to their favorite church. I’m retired, I’m comfortable.”
Hilligoss can be reached for an appearance by calling 513-6337.