Kicking it for a cause: After memorial tournament for 16-year-old was postponed, fundraising goes virtual

Coronavirus

YORKTOWN, Va. (WAVY) — The Gweedo Memorial Foundation Soccer Tournament is one of the many local fundraisers postponed because of COVID-19.

But that doesn’t mean their mission stopped. 

The indoor soccer tournament was created to honor Joseph Conner Williams Guido, one of the three Tabb High School 16-year-olds killed in a car crash after a homecoming dance last fall.

The memorial tournament was initially scheduled for March 5 at Premier Sports Center in Yorktown. The pandemic muddled those plans. It had to be canceled the morning it was supposed to begin.

“It is crazy. It’s unprecedented times right now. It was quite a blow to have to cancel the tournament,” said Conner’s mom, Tammy Guido.

According to Guido, the fundraising pre-coronavirus was going extremely well. They had raised about $20,000 for a scholarship to be given to an athletic senior in Conner’s name.

“So the scholarship is funded for this year,” said Guido. “And right now we’re looking forward to receiving those applications and being able to distribute that in June.”

They are still accepting applications. If you’d like apply, send an email to josephconnerwilliamsguido@yahoo.com and they’ll send you an application.

Guido says since the coronavirus pandemic began, the donations, once abundant, have come to screeching a halt. Although they have enough for this year’s scholarships, foundation leaders want to continue raising money to give out more scholarships in the future.

“So we’re trying to get creative,” Guido said. “We’re trying to do something a little bit different here but still be able to reach our goal of honoring Conner and giving back to our community.” 

The focus now is on virtual fundraising efforts through the Facebook page.

As for the tournament, the date isn’t set in stone but Guido says they have their eye on rescheduling for this July.

“We’ve been able to push through and kind of wait this COVID out and make sure we’re doing it at the right time, making the community feel comfortable to be able to come out and participate,” she said. 

Guido says there is one positive for having the tournament in July versus March. The weather is much much nicer and they can use the outdoor fields at PSC for games.


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