When Brian Bondus was a TV reporter for Fox 59 and CBS 4, he did a story on McKenzie Leichtnam, who had died of a heart ailment at age 20 in 2011. Leichtnam had given life to others as an organ donor.
Bondus and Leichtnam graduated from Carmel High School in 2009, and both loved golf. Leichtnam aspired to become a sports broadcaster.
“They had so many similarities. It had an amazing impact on Brian,” said Diane Bondus, Brian’s mother. “He had always talked about it, but never followed through.”
But after the story, Bondus immediately signed up to become an organ donor. Bondus, a Carmel resident who had changed careers to become a commercial real estate agent, died Aug. 20, 2021, at age 31 from anaphylactic shock because of a severe peanut allergy.
The inaugural Brian Bondus Memorial Golf Outing is set for Aug. 29 at Prairie View Golf Club in Carmel. The charity event is organized by ALO Property Group, where Bondus worked. Diane and her husband, Thom Bondus, decided Indiana Donor Network would be the perfect fit to benefit for the first golf outing.
ALO Property Group President Ralph Balber figures a golf outing while supporting a charity is a perfect tribute for Brian Bondus.
“Brian was a larger-than-life personality who was unbelievably charitable and unbelievably hard working,” Balber said. “In his three or four years, he did more than any other broker I’ve had in terms of setting meetings and meeting people. He was always there to lend a helping hand.
“I promised his mother that his legacy would live on. We had decided a golf outing would be the best way because he had such a passion for golf.”
Balber said the outing will also raise awareness about allergies.
Bondus was active in Best Buddies of Indiana.
“He had his Best Buddy from high school,” Balber said. “I was at many events when he would show up with his Best Buddy. That was Brian.”
Registration for the golf outing is 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. A shotgun start is set for 11 a.m. A light breakfast, box lunch and beverages will be served. A cocktail reception will begin at 4:30 p.m. There will be a brief cocktail hour with individual and team prizes.
For more, visit golfgenius.com/ggid/alobondus22.