The world of golf lost a true legend with the passing of Arnold Palmer.
He did not win the most Majors or the most tournaments, but his true contributions affected the game in multiple ways.
He brought an everyman persona to the game that previously had been perceived as a game of the elite. He had more to do with the popularity of the game, including making it a television staple where the growth and the future of the game, including today’s astronomical purses, than anyone that preceded him and anyone since, save perhaps Tiger Woods.
Woods himself would freely credit Palmer if asked and would be guilty of nothing other than sincere honesty by saying that his contributions were the result of standing on Palmer’s giant shoulders.
The main thing that distinguished Palmer was that he understood that it was his fans that were ultimately responsible for his achievements, and he was never aloof and distant in the fashion of a Bobby Jones, Sam Snead or Jack Nicklaus.
Palmer hailed from the small town of Latrobe in western Pennsylvania, where he learned the game from his greenkeeper father. He was 87 years of age, or as he might say, 15 over par.