By Brian Brackens, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Public Affairs / Published December 11, 2018 on the Wright-Patterson AFB News Website
Capt. Brandon Johnson (M.S. Cost Analysis 2016), a cost analyst with the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance and Special Operations Forces Directorate, recently won the 2018 Veteran Golfers Association’s National Championship tournament in San Francisco, Calif. (Courtesy photo).
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., -- For the second time in three years, Capt. Brandon Johnson donned a Red Jacket after recently winning the Men’s Division of the Veteran Golfers Association’s National Championship tournament in San Francisco, Calif.
Johnson, a cost analyst with the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance and Special Operations Forces Directorate, won the highly competitive event after shooting a 73/73.
Hosted at the Olympic Club, site to five previous U.S. Open Championships, the tournament, featured 90 talented golfers ranging from active-duty members, veterans, and wounded warriors, representing all branches of the armed forces.
“It felt amazing to win this event again,” said Johnson. “I had a good fist pump on the winning putt. I’m grateful to be part of the VGA family and to represent the Air Force.”
The idea to start a veterans focused golf association was developed by a group of wounded warriors who while receiving treatment at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, in Bethesda, Maryland, would get together to play golf in order to improve their game and encourage each other through competition.
After recovering and relocating to locations across the country, many missed the camaraderie and in 2014 created the non-profit VGA.
Although a two-time champion, Johnson wasn’t always a golfer. Being from Minnesota, hockey was his first love and passion.
He attended the United States Air Force Academy where he played Division I hockey, and it wasn’t until he moved to Ohio in 2015 did he start taking golf seriously.
“I love golf,” Johnson said. “There’s a lot of parallels between golf and life. It’s probably one of the ultimate tests of your character, how you handle adverse situations. For instance if you get a bad break, which could have happened to anybody, how do you react to it.”
Speaking to folks interested in taking up golf for the first time, Johnson said that while it’s a difficult sport to learn, there are a lot of benefits, to include the camaraderie and being able to play well into one’s later years.
The 2019 VGA National Championship will be held next fall at the Greenbrier Golf Course located in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia.