June 9, 2017
The country music community came together in Nashville for a special "double header" event for the Tug McGraw Foundation. First, stars participated in a songwriters' round and live auction, then the next day they took part in the Celebrity Pro-Am Sporting Clay Event at the Nashville Gun Club.
The Tug McGraw Foundation was established in 2003 by professional baseball player (and father of country star Tim McGraw) Tug McGraw to raise funds for those suffering from brain tumors. McGraw lost his battle with brain cancer the following year. In the years since, the foundation has expanded its' mission to support brain research in areas of traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress suffered by our nation's wounded, ill and injured veterans.
"He was just a really good guy," said country singer-songwriter Mark Collie when asked about his friend, Tug. "We went camping and bird hunting and things like that. When Tim was off tour and I was, Tug would join us on outings. Tim loves to get out and get in the outdoors. Being a baseball fan, everybody knew Tug and felt like they did. I think it’s great that his name and his life is going to matter more as years continue to pass as we continue to work toward helping to find a resolution for these issues that took his life too soon."
For first-timer Wade Hayes, participating was an easy, yet personal decision. "I have been through cancer twice myself and anyway I can help doctors and scientists battle this thing, I’m all about it."
Being a good shot was not a requirement for participating. Which was good for novice Jesse James Decker.
"No, I’m not a shooter, I am not. I am not that familiar with it, but I am all about trying new things. So anything to help raise awareness, sign me up."
Watch how Decker did in the video above.
I don’t know if I am good, but I will attempt anyway. I’m going to hit something," said a more assured Easton Corbin. "[But] I think I’m still asleep a little bit."
Country singer-songwriter Darryl Worley was confident as the morning began.
"You know, I grew up with guns in my hand," the Savannah, Tennessee native explained. "We started shooting at flying objects when we were about three or four years old, but we didn’t have the facilities for the clays and all that stuff. But I learned the first couple times. I hear that it translates very well if you are used to shooting at things that fly."
"I shot very well last year, they had to come and take me from my team, towards the end of the thing, we were about three stations from being finished and I hadn’t missed a clay all day, so I think I had a pretty good round going, and they said, “You gotta go”, so I just shot up in the air and missed one purpose, because I said, 'I’m not leaving with a perfect score going. That’s terrible!'"
But according to a video posted on his Facebook, Worley may have been a little frustrated this year. Watch below.