SHARON, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — The A.J. Quetta's 2nd Annual Golf Invitational was underway on the fairway Monday morning to raise funds for a hockey player that suffered a serious spinal injury last year.
A.J. Quetta was playing for the Bishop Feehan High School varsity hockey team on January 26, 2021, when he sustained a severe spinal cord injury. According to the AJ's Army website, the first-year costs of AJ's treatment were staggering, as the Quetta family faced nearly $900,000 in expenses tallied from home improvements, hospital care, therapies, and a purchase of a wheelchair among many things. Last year's A.J. Quetta's Golf Invitational put a dent in those invoices, raising $325,000 in just one event.
Nowadays, A.J. continues his rehabilitation with in-home care, massage therapy, and weekly sessions at Journey Forward, with treatments four days a week for three hours a day. The invitational website says that those rehab services sum up to over $100,000 each year, with the total projected cost not covered by insurance being $250,000 for the coming year.
That's where A.J. Quetta's 2nd Annual Golf Invitational steps in, as golfers teed off at the Cape Club of Sharon and Brookmeadow Country Club in Canton to fundraise. This year's invitational was the first that A.J. himself could attend, and many were overjoyed with his presence.
"I'm strolling through here, and I'm like: 'wow, for me?' It's just inspiring for me to do good in my life," A.J. told WBZ's Chris Fama.
According to AJ's Army, Rob Barletta and recently retired New England Patriot Patrick Chung organized the fundraising event with a hundred percent of the proceeds going directly to the Quetta family.
"Him and his sisters, and his mom and dad, they're all here today and they're all pumped. They couldn't wait to get here, and that's why we do it. To have him have a great day and his attitude- that's all it's for. Everything's better with AJ, it really is," Barletta said.
Donations to the A.J. Quetta Fund can be made here.
WBZ's Chris Fama (@CFamaWBZ) reports.