Shawn Thornton hosted his fourth annual Putts and Punches for Parkinson’s golf tournament yesterday at Ferncroft Country Club. Proceeds from the event will benefit the American Parkinson Disease Association the Shawn Thornton Foundation and the Boston Bruins Foundation.

Finding a cure for Parkinson’s — a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system — is a cause close to Thornton’s heart. His grandmother Maureen lost a lengthy battle with the disease and the following summer Thornton started the golf tournament.
“It hits close to home” Thornton said. “We were tight and it was awful towards the end. I walked out of there in tears sometimes after visiting her in the home. So we got this started and it’s gotten bigger and bigger every year. This year is probably the biggest.”

When Thornton signed with the Bruins in 2007 the team knew it was getting a tough honest player. What neither party knew at the time was what a fixture in the Boston community Thornton would become.
A resident of Charlestown Thornton is a regular at charitable events all over town. His running team that represented his foundation in the Falmouth Road Race raised over $11000 on Sunday and his foundation will be involved in another fundraiser tomorrow night at Barrio Cantina in conjunction with UFC.