Around this time every year, we at the Western DuPage Special Recreation Association (WDSRA) take a moment to remember a truly exceptional friend of our organization. Charlie Long. Though Charlie passed away in 2008, his memory lives on.
Charlie was a shining example of someone who understood the meaning of community, philanthropy, support, and dedication. Passionate about community, he supported many worthy causes that helped to make the fabric of his community incredibly rich. Charlie brought people together and strengthened ties making local communities even better places in which to live and work. When a community cause needed backing, Charlie was there to lend his support.
Charlie was also a longtime friend to WDSRA. His son Andy has been participating in WDSRA programs since 1977. Over the years, Andy bowled, went on trips, played basketball, softball, volleyball, and was named the King of the Holiday dinner dance. He also participated in social clubs, TROOP drama, scouts, and has been in dozens of other WDSRA programs over the years.
An outstanding advocate for WDSRA, when help was needed Charlie would lend a hand. When a video needed a voice over, there was no voice stronger than Charlie’s. He coached, volunteered and attend many WDSRA events. As a WDSRA Foundation Trustee, he helped forge partnerships that would bring WDSRA programs and services to more families in DuPage County.
Because of the profound affect Charlie had on the WDSRA family, in 2009 the WDSRA Golf Classic was renamed in his honor. In addition, the Charlie Long Award was created to celebrate those individuals who continue to live their lives in the remarkable fashion that Charlie lived his.
The Charlie Long Award is presented to an individual or group who brings people together for the common good, works tirelessly on behalf of others and gives generously of themselves. In essence, an individual or group who lives the legacy that Charlie Long has left.
The award will be presented at the Charlie Long/WDSRA Golf Classic to be held Monday, June 6, this year. As in years past, Charlie’s wife Joan and sons Andy and Chuck will be on hand to make the presentation.
Charlie lived his life in an admirable way and as a result, left this world a better place than how he found it. We are proud to have been a part of Charlie’s family and he will always be a part of the WDSRA family.
If you would like to join us for a great day of golf, support WDSRA participants & families and to honor Charlie, visit www.wdsra.com. The golf classic sells out fast, so be sure to get your tickets soon.