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Fighter Pilot Hopes You'll Tee Off

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Dan Rooney will soon leave on his third deployment to Iraq. Dan Rooney will soon leave on his third deployment to Iraq.
He also started a foundation called Folds of Honor. He also started a foundation called Folds of Honor.
Rooney is building The Patriot golf course between Catoosa and Owasso. Rooney is building The Patriot golf course between Catoosa and Owasso.

He's a man with two missions.  Major Dan Rooney is preparing to return to the skies over Iraq on his third tour of duty as a fighter pilot. But, this weekend he's hoping you'll pick up your golf clubs to help him accomplish his other mission:  Patriot Golf Day.  News on 6 anchor Jennifer Loren reports Major Dan Rooney is building his dream golf course between Catoosa and Owasso in Rogers County.

The course is called The Patriot and it begins with a 148 foot drop off the first tee.

"This is like Mount Everest in Oklahoma. I mean you've got the huge views of downtown Tulsa. This is a par 5," said Major Dan Rooney.

Those who know Major Rooney wouldn't be surprised if one day he tackled the real Mount Everest.  Not only is this father of three building a golf course, he's a golf pro.  And, he flies an F-16 fighter jet in the Air National Guard.

He will soon leave on his third deployment to Iraq.

"This year, I have two missions. Number one is certainly going to serve the country with the 125th Fighter Squadron here in Tulsa. Number two is Patriot Golf Day," said Major Dan Rooney.

On Patriot Golf Day, golfers at more than 4,000 courses across the country are asked to donate at least one dollar to Rooney's foundation, Folds of Honor.

"That mission is to provide college and vocational scholarships to the sons and daughters of military members who have either been disabled or killed in Iraq and Afghanistan," said Major Dan Rooney.

Last year, the foundation raised more than a million dollars and while they don't know how much they'll raise this year, Rooney feels confident they'll do well.

"We should fly past, at supersonic speed, what we did in 2007," said Major Dan Rooney.

Whether it's flying jets, driving the fairway or building a golf course to benefit military families, it's all in a day's work for one of Oklahoma's finest patriots.

"On a personal level, to be able to do this, and to give back to this country, is the most satisfying thing I've ever experienced in my life," said Major Dan Rooney.

Patriot Golf Day began on Friday and runs through Monday.  Several Tulsa-area golf courses are participating.

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