Golf tournament to commemorate firefighter
Barrie J. Niebergall spent the last 24 years of his life serving Summit County as a dedicated firefighter, and this weekend his former colleagues will commemorate him in a fundraising effort at Copper Creek Golf Course.The third annual Summit Fire Authority Golf Tournament will be held on Friday, and this year will celebrate the life of Niebergall, who died March 16 of acute heart failure in the exercise room of the Red, White & Blue north station in Breckenridge. He was 56.”Barrie worked with all of the Summit County fire departments and trained the majority of all the people who are currently in our system,” said Copper Mountain Fire Department Chief Scott Randolph. “He loved to play golf, and we are doing this to honor him and hopefully to capture his spirit in this tournament.”Proceeds for the event will primarily benefit the Summit Fire Authority, which, according to Copper Mountain firefighter Kim Campbell, provides valuable training for new recruits in the Summit County firefighting system. Niebergall worked extensively with young firefighters in training.”Barrie actually helped teach my fire academy class,” Campbell said. “I’m sure that he would be very excited to know that this tournament is benefiting so many people in his name. This will truly solidify that he was a pillar in the firefighting community.”This year’s competition commences at 9 a.m. Friday, with day-of registration beginning at 8 a.m. The event will follow a four-player scramble format, meaning each athlete from every team hits a tee shot, after which the team selects the best shot. Each member of the team hits from that position. The process is continued until the ball is holed. The $110 late registration fee includes green fees, golf carts, tee prizes, an Hawaiian shirt and a lunch along the course. In addition to the scramble competition, there will be other features, such as hole-in-one prizes, betting holes, putting ribbons, mulligans for sale and a silent auction.Reports show that 30 teams have already preregistered for the tournament. Whereas 36 teams would customarily be a complete sellout, tournament organizers said that they will fit in more than that number.Randolph, who is spearheading Friday’s scramble, said that it is poignant that proceeds will go toward training, considering Niebergall placed much emphasis on this aspect of firefighting during his time in Summit.”In all of the departments, training is our business,” Randolph said. “This is an extra source of money that will help ensure that nobody will be behind in their training needs.”The wisdom Barrie left us will be with us for the rest of our lifetimes. Hopefully we can be good stewards and pass on this wisdom to those who were not fortunate enough to know him.”Michael Atkins can be contacted at (970) 668-3998, ext. 251, or at email@example.com.
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