Mark Larson, known affectionately as "Larzo", had a big presence to his closest friends, and those who knew him. He carried himself in an always gentle demeanor.
Mark was diagnosed on May 19th, 2017 with stage 4 colon cancer, was given a 24 month projection, and lost his battle 3 weeks later June 13th, 2017. A disease if caught early enough, has a high success rate of treatment and cure. Unfortunately, and regrettably, Mark did not take those signs seriously enough when they arose in December and January, and for months he fought discomfort, but did not seek a Doctor appointment to discuss those early symptoms of abdomen discomfort, and frequent bloody stools he had so frequently been experiencing.
Along Mark’s bedside in the hospital the idea of an annual tournament was born, The Larzo Memorial to be held each June.
His Mission was simple, bring folks together for a day of fun, raise awareness to your own health, colon cancer, and don't make his mistake of ignoring those symptoms. Go to the Doctor! Mark stated he wished he had taken better care of himself from his bed, and this Golf Tournament may just raise awareness in time for it to help save a life from this horrible disease, or anything else if caught early enough. The tournament’s goal is to raise awareness and money to benefit two great organizations, The American Cancer Society, and the Iowa Sports Foundation, (Adaptive Sports Iowa, Iowa Games, and LiveHealthy Iowa), that has Chuck Long as the CEO. Both Iowa Greats Chuck Hartlieb and Chuck Long visited Mark in the hospital. Mark really liked the organization he heard about from Chuck on Adaptive Sports Iowa and wanted to help.
Larzo instilled a few rules for the tournament, and on everyone who plays:
Rule 32.2 - Tee off all Par 5s with a 7 Iron! - LSGI - "Larzo's Still Got It!"
Rule 34b. - Schedule your Colonoscopy!
Rule 36c. - In Heaven there is no Beer, that's why we drink it here.
Rule 37.1 - Have Fun!
Rule 77.7 - Fight, Fight, Fight for Iowa, and against Colon Cancer, until the game is won!
Thank you to all the sponsors and participants that have helped make this annual event happen! Larzo would be humbled!