Golf Tournament Will Raise Funds for Disease Cure

If you tee off in the Oct. 25 golf tournament at Jurupa Hills Golf Course in Riverside, you won't just be playing for par---you'll be playing for life.

The tournament is the inaugural Samantha Dodaro Golf Classic, an event to help raise funds to find a cure for Spinal Muscular Atrophy.

Namesake of the golf classic is a 1 1/2 year old Cherry Valley toddler who was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy at 4 months of age.

At the time, the prognosis was bleak.

So far, she is beating the odds.

A genetic disease that restricts voluntary muscle movements, even swallowing, SMA is the Number 1 genetic killer of children younger than 2.

Samantha can't sit up, crawl, hold up her head or even swallow.  She's extremely bright and interested in her surroundings, says her mother, Wanda Dodaro, who stretches Samantha's legs and works with her every day to prevent her muscles from permanently constricting.

"Our goal is to keep bringing awareness to people so that research can continue until they find a cure," she says.  "We have to keep believing they will find a cure."

The Samantha Dodaro Golf Classic & Raffle begins at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 25 at Jurupa Hills Golf Course, 6161 Moraga Ave., Riverside.  Shotgun start begins at 10 a.m.; buffet lunch at 2:30 p.m.  Cost is $75 and includes green fees, cart and lunch.  For registration and information, call (909) 685-7214.  You can visit Samantha's web site at


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