• Bill Caine, Woodford Sun Sports

Woodford County father and son bond over golf

CRAIG RUSH helps an 18-month-old Corey with his golf swing. (Photo submitted)

Woodford County resident Craig Rush has enjoyed the game of golf for nearly 50 years. The game brings joy to his life in many ways but most importantly he has been able to share this game with his son, Corey, who shares his father's passion. Rush can recall being a youngster wanting to be part of the game "I can remember being a little boy and spending my days on the golf course as a kid and my mom would give me 50 cents for the day," said Rush. "There was nowhere else I wanted to be, and on Friday she gave me a dollar and then I was able to get a burger." That childhood experience carried Rush's love for golf through the years and now he has children to share the game with. "Both Corey and Katie tried the game," said Rush. "Katie fooled with it a bit but Corey always wanted to play. When (Corey) was a very small boy, I would come home from playing and he would say, 'Daddy I want to go where you went.'" Soon enough, the two of them were out on the course together and Craig would have Corey play from the fairway into the green. "I would start him out at a hundred yards or so," said Rush. "Soon enough we were backing him up and trying from further. We took it slow and we had a big time together." The Rushes have been members of Moss Hill Golf Course (formerly Woodford Hills Country Club) for many years and consider the club a second home. Their children grew up at the club and spent their summer nights swimming or on the golf course. As Corey's love for the game grew, Craig's did as well. "The game has given me so much by being able to share this with him." The bond of father and son on the golf course is a different version of typical bonding. In golf, the Rushes were able to come up with strategies, decision-making and execution. They shared many laughs on the golf course and eventually Corey was old enough to win a round or two. "I remember one time we were out and someone said, 'you are going to be so mad when he finally beats you,'" said Rush. "The first thought that came to mind was 'no, I am not. I will be thrilled that he met that goal.' We all want our children to do well. If we play 100 times I can probably beat him five or six times now and I'm fine with that." Corey made the Woodford County High School team as a seventh grader and was playing the number one spot by ninth grade. His love for the game grew bigger by the day. "I remember this one time we had a plan to play Harbour Town in South Carolina," said Rush. "Corey had no idea and so we are driving around looking for this course and Corey kept pointing saying 'there it is.' We pull into Harbour Town and I look at my wife, Barb, and tell her she put the directions in wrong and we are at the wrong place. We paused for a moment and I told him, 'I guess we should check it out while we are here.' Corey's eyes were as big as saucers as they got out of the car and headed in." Experiences like this have only enhanced the love for the game but also have filled their lives with great stories and lessons learned. "Corey loves being around the game," said Rush. "He's out at Moss Hill and he gets involved with the junior golfers. He is in school for sports management at Eastern Kentucky University and wants to be around sports his whole life." As Corey's journey into golf continues, Craig has a great wish in mind. "I hope someday he can sit here and tell someone a similar story about (how) he was playing with his dad as a young man and can pass it along to his children as well," said Rush. "I can't think of a story that would make me happier."

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