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Arnold Palmer – The Legend and Icon

Posted by: Jennifer | Posted on: September 26th, 2016 | 0 Comments

Arnold Palmer

 

Arnold Palmer, one of the greatest and most popular players in the history of golf, was widely regarded as one of the best professional golfers of all time. He was also one of the most charismatic figures in all of sports, drawing loyal fans known as “Arnie’s Army,” who would follow him at tournaments.

He was nicknamed “The King” and had won the Masters four times and the British Open twice.

His 50th and last appearance at the Masters came in 2004 and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush that same year. Palmer retired from professional golf two years later.

He stayed connected to golf by owning a golf club in Florida and consulting for the Golf Channel.

Outside of golf, Palmer was an avid pilot and his name is largely associated with his eponymous drink, which is a combination of iced tea and lemonade.

Career highlights of golf great Arnold Palmer

  • Born on Sept. 10, 1929, in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, the son of a country club professional/groundskeeper
  • Quits college at Wake Forest after 1950 death of friend and golf team mate Bud Worsham in a car crash, and joins the U.S. Coast Guard, leading to a three-year break from golf.
  • Returns to golf and wins the 1954 U.S. Amateur championship, and turns pro a few months later.
  • Wins the 1955 Canadian Open for his first professional victory.
  • Shoots to fame by winning 1958 Masters in Augusta, Georgia, making him the tournament’s youngest champion at the time and ends up as top money winner that year with $40,000.
  • Between 1960 and 1963 wins 29 titles and takes home more than $400,000 in prize money.
  • Wins his last major at the 1964 Masters, making him the first golfer to win the Masters four times (1958, 1960, 1962, 1964). It gives him seven major titles (including two British Opens and one U.S. Open).
  • In 1968, becomes the first golfer to eclipse $1 million total purse winnings and goes on to claim 93 titles.
  • One of sports’ all-time greatest pitchmen, by late 1990s is reported to be making more than $20 million in endorsements annually.
  • Helps found Golf Channel with television entrepreneur Joe Gibbs as the first single-sport cable network in the United States.