Dave Stockton honored with PGA Distinguished Service Award

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Two-time PGA Championship winner Dave Stockton was the man of the night at the North Charleston Performing Arts Center on Wednesday, as he received the 2012 PGA Distinguished Service Award.

The award was especially fitting: Stockton was the Captain of the Ryder Cup team that defeated the European team back in 1991, right on Kiawah's Ocean Course.

Charleston native and country music superstar Darius Rucker rocked out in front of the crowd that included several Medal of Honor Recipients.

Rucker performed a 30-minute mini-concert before the award presentation. Both he and Stockton expressed their delight at the PGA Championship being here in the Lowcountry this year.

Devoted to philanthropic efforts with the PGA, 70-year old Stockton spearheaded the campaign to{}allow Medal of Honor Recipients free entry into any PGA-sponsored event, anywhere, anytime.

"I call the Tour, and I ask them to give credentials to any of the Medal of Honor recipients who would like a badge. At the present time, 47 hold Tour badges. It says Medal of Honor recipient and they can go to any single tournament on our Tour, any Tour and get in," explained Stockton.{}{}

According to the PGA web site, The Distinguished Leader Award, inaugurated back in 1988, honors "outstanding individuals who display leadership and humanitarian qualities, including integrity, sportsmanship, and enthusiasm for the game of golf."{}

It is the Association's highest annual honor.