What Makes Golf Great? The People Who Play It

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Kapalua Divot Tool/Photo:  Charlie Nance

Kapalua Divot Tool/Photo: Charlie Nance

Charlie-135 Charlie Nance
For almost 20 years, Charlie Nance has co-hosted an award-winning...
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I’m so glad I was able to find this divot tool/ball marker this morning.  It’s been in and out of the bag over the years (I collect them) and it served as a marvelous reminder of a man today.

“Jerry” was my friend.

He was sick for a long time.

The world lost his light in it yesterday.

We shared two extremely memorable vacations, many good bottles of wine, and hundreds of laughs.  One such trip was an Hawaiian cruise that, when docked in Maui, included a round at Kapalua.

Let me stress right now…Jerry was a MISERABLE golfer.  It never mattered, though.  He just enjoyed being out there, trying to do well, being with friends, and having fun.

And that’s the takeaway we ALL should have.

As a low-handicap, UBER-competitive guy, I am as guilty as anyone of taking this game WAYYY too seriously.  My WORST day is better than 99% of the people who play this game’s best, yet I tend to act as if it’s the end of the world.

No more.

I can still see “Jerry” strolling around Kapalua in a hideous Hawaiian print shirt, SANDALS with golf spikes in the bottom, celebrating that he two-putted for nine on a par 5.

Atta-boy!

He just enjoyed being out there, trying to do well, being with friends, and having fun.

“Jerry,” who’s handicap was so high it couldn’t be computed, was the kind of guy who made golf great, because he set the example of how it should be for all of us…a celebration of life…just being out there, trying to do well, being with friends, and having fun.

Two weeks ago, I played in a member/guest in Augusta with “Jerry’s” step-daughter’s husband.  On Saturday night, I sat with them and their son and we spontaneously started telling stories about him.

Over cocktails, at a table adjacent to a golf course he would have loved to have played-yet NEVER would have broken 130 on, “Jerry” made us laugh and smile…as he always did.

Farewell, my friend.  I look forward to our next round on a truly, Heavenly, track.

Until then, I promise to be more like you and enjoy just being out there, trying to do well, being with friends, and having fun.

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