While driving to his work in October 2003, Christopher Groom was killed in an auto accident. Just days after this tragedy, the Groom family learned of a selfless gift to charity their son secretly made in the year before he died.

After attending services at North Raleigh United Methodist Church during the 2002 Christmas season, Chris handed Pastor Bob O’Keef an envelope. “Chris said that his little brothers and sisters were going to have a great Christmas,” O’Keef recalled. “He then asked if I would take the envelope and see that some children got toys with it."

Although he earned only minimum wage, inside the envelope was $100 in cash, a gift Chris wanted kept secret from everyone, especially his parents, Mike and Suzanne.

“The fact that he did it didn’t surprise me because he’s just a good kid and obviously cared for others,” said the pastor.

O’Keef stirred many emotions when he tearfully revealed this secret gift at Chris’ funeral. The story so impressed family members and friends that the Groom family was inspired to expand on the gift Chris made, setting up a memorial fund in his name to help less fortunate children. Later, the family envisioned an even greater tribute, the Chris Groom Memorial Golf Tournament. Through this event, they hope to grow Chris’ loving gift into a much larger fund for the needy children their son sought to help that Sunday in church.

Out of their terrible loss the Groom family has found a way to honor their son and give meaning to the tragedy that took him at so young an age. They invite you to join in their celebration of Chris' life by your generous donation and/or participation in this year's tournament.

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Black Sunshine Band: Tears

This song was written and dedicated to Chris by his uncle, Matt Reardon, lead singer of Black Sunshine
Chris Groom Memorial Foundation