From a Golf Tournament to a Children’s Book, Veteran Supporter Gives Back
Bonita Springs resident, Veteran, and retired oil company executive, Captain Robert (Bob) Cameron, is passionate about helping Veterans and supporting the Home Base mission. His son Rob was a Naval Officer on Nuclear Submarines. Many of Bob’s friends are Veterans. Ensuring military families have what they need for optimal health and wellness drives him in his volunteer efforts with Home Base. Despite battling a rare neurological medical condition, currently being treated at Mayo Clinic and Massachusetts General Hospital, he is putting his limited amount of energy into giving back to causes important to him – something he says gives him great pride and helps him stay strong.
Captain Bob graduated from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and quickly rose through the ranks commanding ships in the worldwide trade for a major energy company. His strong Christian faith helped him weather severe storms while at sea and at home especially after he and his wife lost their four-year-old son Ryan in his bout with a rare cancer in 1988.
Due to this condition, which affects his short-term memory, hearing as well as his stability and balance, Bob was forced to retire early from BP after 23-years. To keep his mind active, he started writing a children’s book series, Tuckey the Nantucket Whale. There are now five books in the series and the last release was the recipient of the prestigious Mom’s Choice Gold Award. With a passion for giving back to the community, his books benefited charities on Nantucket where he had a summer home for over two decades.
Bob heard about Home Base from a neighbor in 2017. He went to his first meeting and immediately jumped on board to get involved. One of the first events was the Veteran’s Day Pelican’s Nest Golf Club Home Base fundraiser. Bob’s role on the committee is helping with the publicity for the event. Additionally, he helps with putting together a “Nantucket Getaway” package for the online auction. He, along with assistance from Home Base Director and Retired Brigadier General Ed Dyer, also hosted several Tuckey the Nantucket Whale book signings where 100% of sales go to Home Base.
Each year, the Pelican’s Nest Home Base Golf Tournament grows allowing more funds to be raised to help Veterans battle Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury –a condition Bob personally relates to given similarities to his brain condition.
Last year, the Pelican’s Nest Golf Tournament successfully raised $160,000 for Home Base. Since its inception five years ago, almost a half-million dollars has been raised for local Veterans.
Each year, thanks to Bob and the event committee’s volunteer efforts, the Veteran’s Day fundraising event attracts a wider audience, generating greater awareness for Home Base and how it helps Veterans with invisible wounds of war. Bob says he is only a spoke in the wheel, helping this wheel turn faster to generate more funds for Veterans. The Home Base cause has made such a huge impact at Pelican’s Nest Golf Club that the Board designated Home Base as the major fundraiser for the club.
Outside of the tournament, during the course of the year, Bob also hosts a number of book signings on Nantucket, Naples and other locations. Most of the proceeds from sales of the books go to Home Base.
Because of the pandemic, this year’s Veteran’s Day Pelican’s Nest Home Base Golf Tournament has been canceled. Bob and the committee are working hard to come up with other safe ways to generate and fundraise for Veterans. In addition, Bob plans on having more book signings on Veteran’s Day and during the holidays with 100% of the proceeds going to Home Base. Stay tuned for more information on the incredible efforts of Bob and the Pelican’s Nest Golf Club.