The Times West Virginian

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Opinion

June 21, 2013

Jozwiak continues to give back to his ‘home’ state

Brian Jozwiak.

It’s a name many of us remember. He was a football player, wasn’t he? For the Mountaineers. And didn’t he play professional football for a couple of years before an injury cut short his career?

Yes, that’s him.

But the name Brian Jozwiak has come to mean so much more than the accomplishments he made on the field 30 years ago.

He’s helped kids. Many hundreds of them. Maybe thousands of kids treated at West Virginia University Children’s Hospital. It’s a shame that people throughout the state aren’t familiar with this good will ambassador who has made the childrens’ hospital his pet project.

Every June about this time, Brian Jozwiak returns from Florida to his self-proclaimed “home” state to give a major assist to the kids at WVU Children’s Hospital in Morgantown. He holds a celebrity golf tournament here at Green Hills Country Club and get many area sponsors to help him as well.

The Brian Jozwiak Celebrity Golf Classic held each June has become a can’t-miss event.

The many celebrities that come in —  athletes, coaches, former athletes, former coaches — all enjoy their round of golf. But the major beneficiaries are the youngsters at the children’s hospital who are assisted by the monetary value the tournament brings. Over the past 22 years, the tournament has brought in hundreds of thousands of dollars that go directly to the children’s hospital.

One might think that Jozwiak would prefer to hold such a fund-raising golf event in Florida, where he has lived for many years and where he has taught and coached and in the state he now calls home. But for the former Mountaineer All-American, West Virginia is home, even though he was born and raised in Baltimore. So it is the youngsters of the Mountain State, many of whom are facing life-threatening illnesses, that profit from Jozwiak’s fundraising efforts each year.

We read of a number of former athletes who return to the state to help out in one way or another. Many cash in on their name to hold camps or other such fundraisers. Brian Jozwiak appears totally genuine for his love of the Mountain State and especially those young people who are patients of WVU’s Children’s Hospital.

We thank Jozwiak for his continued dedication to the state he calls “home” and the ones who need support the most.

 

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