Southwest Airlines Raises $600,000 'Fore' Ronald McDonald House Charities at 29th-Annual LUV Classic

Eleven Ronald McDonald Houses Across the Country to Benefit

DALLAS, TX--(Marketwired - Oct 7, 2014) - Southwest Airlines raised $600,000 at the 29th-Annual LUV Classic golf tournament benefiting Ronald McDonald House Charities® (RMHC®). The proceeds from this year's event will be directed to 11 RMHC and Ronald McDonald House® Chapters to support their Ronald McDonald House program, which provides stability and vital resources to families while their child receives critical medical treatment at nearby hospitals, at little to no cost to the families.

Since the inception of the LUV Classic, Southwest Airlines has donated more than $15 million to a total of 87 RMHC Chapters nationwide helping to enable family-centered care by keeping families together so they can heal and cope better while facing their child's medical crisis.

"Southwest Airlines has been a valuable partner to the US RMHC system since 1983," said J.C. Gonzalez-Mendez, president and CEO, RMHC. "In addition to monetary support provided through the LUV Classic, Southwest employees give their time working thousands of volunteer hours each year preparing meals for our families providing much needed nourishment and a place to connect with other families experiencing similar worry and stress."

This year's recipient Chapters were selected based on an assessment of the needs of the Chapters and their ability to provide enhanced services through their House program to children and families. Ronald McDonald Houses in the following cities are benefitting from the generous donations made from the event: Wichita, Kan.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Des Moines, Iowa; Charlotte, N.C.; Akron-Canton, Ohio; Norfolk, Va.; Portland, Maine; Richmond, Va.; Rochester, N.Y., and Hartford, Conn. Through its programs, RMHC supports improved access to quality medical care for children, helping to bolster a family's psychological wellbeing during a child's illness and enhance the clinical experience and outcomes for children and their families.

The LUV Classic was founded in 1985 by Southwest Airlines President Emeritus Colleen Barrett. The event has since grown to be ranked as one of Dallas' top charity golf tournaments by the Dallas Business Journal.

Ronald McDonald House Charities® (RMHC®), a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) corporation, creates, finds and supports programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children. Through its global network of 300 Chapters in more 58 countries and regions, its three core programs, the Ronald McDonald House®, the Ronald McDonald Family Room® and the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile®, and millions of dollars in grants to support children's programs worldwide, RMHC provides stability and vital resources to families so they can get and keep their children healthy and happy. All RMHC-operated and supported programs provide access to quality health care and give children and families the time they need to heal and cope better together.

In its 44th year of service, Dallas-based Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) continues to differentiate itself from other carriers with exemplary Customer Service delivered by more than 46,000 Employees to more than 100 million Customers annually. Based on the most recent data available from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Southwest is the nation's largest carrier in terms of originating domestic passengers boarded. The airline also operates the largest fleet of Boeing aircraft in the world to serve 93 destinations in 40 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and five near-international countries. Some flights are operated by wholly owned subsidiary AirTran Airways. Southwest is one of the most honored airlines in the world, known for its triple bottom line approach that takes into account the carrier's performance and productivity, the importance of its People and the communities it serves, and its commitment to efficiency and the planet. The 2013 Southwest Airlines One Report™ can be found at

From its first flights on June 18, 1971, Southwest Airlines launched an era of unprecedented affordability in air travel described by the U.S. Department of Transportation as "The Southwest Effect," a lowering of fares and increase in passenger traffic wherever the carrier serves. With Southwest Airlines, Bags Fly Free ® (first and second checked pieces of luggage, size and weight limits apply), and there are no change fees (fare difference may apply) when you need to change your flight. Southwest's fleet offers leather seating and the comfort of full-size cabins, a majority of which are equipped with satellite-based WiFi connectivity over the United States, which enables live and video-on-demand TV currently FREE compliments of DISH, and a new, sustainable cabin interior. Southwest acquired AirTran Airways in May 2011 and by the end of 2014 intends to complete the full integration of the AirTran network into Southwest. With 41 consecutive years of profitability, the People of Southwest and AirTran operate more than 3,600 flights a day. Southwest Airlines' frequent flights and low fares are available online at or by phone at 800-I-FLY-SWA.

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Media Contact:
Jennifer Blanchard Smith

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Southwest Airlines Media Relations
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