HARTFORD, Conn. – After winning his third Travelers Championship title in eight years on Sunday, Bubba Watson said the tournament had become his second home to the one that he and his family have in the Greenbriar in West Virginia.
Less than 24 hours later, Watson demonstrated those feelings in spades. Watson donated $200,000 of the $1.26 million that he won at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell to The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, the primary beneficiary of the tournament that the late actor Paul Newman founded in 1988 in Ashford, Conn.
Watson’s generosity enabled the tournament’s charitable donations to reach $2 million, a record since the Travelers became title sponsor in 2007. The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp provides an experience for children facing serious illnesses. Three campers — Tyler Backus, Carly Demartino and Jeremy Brown — served as the Honorary Co-Chairs this year, helping to raise awareness about the important role that the Camp plays in the lives of more than 20,000 children and family members each year.
“Bubba is a tremendous person with a huge heart, and this unbelievable gesture is a demonstration of how much he cares about others,” said Andy Bessette, Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer of Travelers. “On behalf of everyone at Travelers, I want to thank him and his family for their ongoing support of our goal of raising more money for charity.”
Said tournament director Nathan Grube: “Bubba’s generous donation is an example of how he has embraced our tournament and our region. We are extremely grateful to Bubba and everyone who has supported our mission to help nonprofit organizations like The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp.”
Watson’s comeback season has been fueled by improved health, a return to familiar equipment and the purchase of a Prevost bus with which he can travel the PGA Tour with his wife, Angie, and adopted sons Caleb and Dakota. During the Travelers Championship, they parked the bus next to J.B. Holmes, one of four runners-up, and the kids played with one of their best friends on the Tour, Holmes’ golden doodle, Ace.
Watson shot a 7-under-par 63 on Sunday to rally from a six-stroke deficit and win his 12th PGA Tour title with a 72-hole total of 17-under 263. He finished three strokes ahead of Holmes, Paul Casey, Beau Hossler and two-time champion Stewart Cink, who closed with a 62, the low round of the tournament that tied his career low. Defending champion Jordan Spieth had putting woes to the bitter end while finishing in a tie for 42nd at 276.
The tournament contributes 100 percent of its net proceeds to nonprofits throughout the region, and this year’s funding will support approximately 130 worthy organizations. The largest sporting event in the state has generated more than $16 million for more than 700 local charities since Travelers became title sponsor.
For more information, visit TravelersChampionship.com.