Golfers Tee Off in Memory of Dear Friend

Family, friends, and a good game of golf. These were just a few of the many things that brought joy to Tom Ackerman who passed away suddenly at the age of 60 of a heart attack in 2012. His wife Micki, daughters Kourtney and Kristin, and their families were left stunned and heartbroken. The day before his heart attack, Tom was at Acacia Country Club playing one of the best rounds of golf he had ever played. After a fun-filled day on the course, Tom went home and spent quality time with his favorite people, his family. That evening, Tom and his family said their goodnights not knowing Tom would suffer a fatal heart attack overnight.

In July of that year on Tom’s birthday, the family gathered to pay tribute and reminisce of their fondest memories together, shedding many tears and sharing a lingering sense of grief. That’s when Joe, Kourtney’s husband, had a light bulb moment. Rather than have Tom’s birthday be a day full of tears,why not do something to celebrate Tom's memory. What better way to remember Tom than to invite friends and family to gather together once a year to share memories, laughs, and time on the greens? To match Tom’s charitable heart, the Ackerman family decided to make the outing a fundraiser. After a brief search, Micki and her family chose the Ronald McDonald of Cleveland to be the beneficiary of the annual event to help families in need.

We want to make a difference in Tom’s name. And we feel like giving back is the best way to do it.
— Micki Ackerman

What began as any other fundraising event has blossomed into a strong relationship between a family coping with their sudden loss and the Ronald McDonald House, whose mission it is to serve families while they care for their children during some of the most difficult times in their lives. This year, more than 70 golfers teed off at Fowler's Mill in Chesterland, Ohio for the 5th anniversary of the Tom Ackerman Golf Outing, held on Tom’s 66th birthday. Even his grandson Colin got in on the round of 18 holes. Following a breezy afternoon on the course, golfers and guests gathered in the club house where they took part in a raffle, dinner, and learned more about the Ronald McDonald House.

We love the Ronald McDonald House! Our grandkids love coming to the House to play in the treehouse and meet the kids. That’s what makes us happy; we can see how money is being used because it’s tangible.
— Micki Ackerman

Since the inaugural event in 2013, the Tom Ackerman Golf Outing has raised more than $25,000 for the Ronald McDonald House of Cleveland. The funds raised from the outing have been used to sponsor room 219 at the House. Each time guests enter the room, they are greeted by the sign with Tom’s name. The Ronald McDonald House would like to thank the Ackerman family and friends for their support in helping keep families close and for creating such a fun and welcoming event that keeps Tom’s legacy alive.

The 6th Annual Tom Ackerman Golf Outing will be held at Fowler’s Mill on Friday, July 27, 2018. To learn more about the Tom Ackerman Golf Outing, visit the event's Facebook page by clicking the button below.