Tralee GC (Arnold Palmer Design/Tralee Golf Club)

Why Arnold Palmer Will Live Forever

This article originally appeared on

No matter where you live or where you've played golf in the world, you've felt the influence of Arnold Palmer one way or another...and his legacy will live on forever.

Here are a few examples, and please share yours.

For us, certain places will always offer a distinct link to The King, who passed away on Sunday at the age of 87.

Notably, Mr. Palmer's design company is responsible for 300-plus courses around the world, ranging from his designs at major resorts like Kapalua and Turtle Bay in Hawaii, to Reunion in Orlando, to international facilities like Tralee in Ireland (below) and Chung Shan Hot Spring, the first course built in China.

(Arnold Palmer Design/Tralee Golf Club)

He was sometimes less hands-on than Jack Nicklaus has been in his own design career, but that back-seat philosophy helped Palmer foster the development of a number of respected architects, from late-1900s figures like Frank Duane and Ed Seay to current standouts like Thad Layton, Erik Larsen and Brandon Johnson.

When reached for comment, Layton said...

"It was an honor to have worked alongside him over the past 20 years at Arnold Palmer Design Company, sharing his enthusiasm for the game he loved through his work. His legacy will live on through the countless lives he touched along the way and the beautiful courses that bear his name.

Then, of course, there's the King's winter home: Bay Hill Club & Lodge in Orlando, where he could often be found schmoozing with guests in the restaurant at lunchtime.

Palmer transformed the course and its modest hotel into a cozy shrine to the gentility that will always make him such a beloved figure.

Bay Hill's iconic par-3 17th. (Arnold Palmer Design)

Here's a Bay Hill memory from our friend David Baum, publisher of the Golf Odyssey travel newsletter.

I met him about three years ago in his office.

He clearly was not in great health, but was still quite jovial and could not have been more welcoming.

As you would expect, his office was adorned with an insane amount of memorabilia. He pointed to one which was an actual golf hole mounted in a shadow box with two balls in the hole. He told us the story about it.

It happened at a tournament in the days before there were TV cameras on every hole. He made a hole in one and no cameras were there to capture it.

After the round he was interviewed and he was asked how he did it. He told the media to simply come out the next day with their cameras and he would do it again.

And he did.

Here's another story from our friend Justin Tupper, co-founder and CEO of the Revolution Golf video instruction platform...

I had the honor of caddying for Mr. Palmer during the opening of Spring Island, South Carolina's Old Tabby Links, which he designed with Ed Seay.

It was a warm spring day (about 90 degrees) and I had a caddy jumpsuit on.

The 9th hole and 10th tee were a long way away, so when we finished on 9, there was a cart waiting to whisk him and the other players to the 10th hole.

Loads of members were getting autographs, so I got started carrying the bag towards the 10th tee.

A minute or so later, the cart caravan approached, so I stepped to the side.

When Mr. Palmer's cart came by he told the driver to stop. He was sitting on the back of the cart and said, "Justin, jump on here with me."

(I will never forget that because he called me by my name.)

I sat down next to him and he put his arm around me -- just like your grandfather would do -- and he said, "How are you doing?"

I was at a loss for words, so I just said, "I'm good -- a little hot, but having a great time, Mr. Palmer."

He looked me dead in the eyes and said, "Well, you are doing a great job."

That moment has always stuck with me.

It was very personal and I have reflected on it a lot in life.

Many people have stories of Mr. Palmer being so warm, personable and sincere.

I'm so fortunate to have one, too, and I already miss him.

Now, we'd love to hear from you.

What comes to mind when you think of Arnold Palmer?

Did you watch him play in his prime on TV? Have you or your friends met him? Played any of his golf courses?

Please share your thoughts and read what others are saying below.

Sep 27, 2016

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JD Deloach's avatar
JD Deloach wrote at 2016-10-04 02:34:47+00:00:

I always remember playing at your home course in Arnold Palmer Automotive Group 1989 Invitational, Latrobe, PA. The advice you gave me "to always give back to game of golf for the next generation" has stuck with me through the years. I still show off the lepel pin you placed on my sweater

m eddy's avatar
m eddy wrote at 2016-10-03 21:57:50+00:00:

I was part of "Arnies Army" in 1968 when I first met him when I marshalled

at the Weschester Classic he was open friendly and gracious. As he was years

later when I met him on several occasions at Bay hill. No one had a greater

name in sports. God Bless The King!

Bill Mitchell's avatar
Bill Mitchell wrote at 2016-10-03 13:57:49+00:00:

I had a friend Dave who stated that he knew Arnold Palmer and since I'd never been able to get an autograph for golf events Arnold played, I put him to the test. I said, "If you know Arnold Palmer, get me his autograph". 4 months later at Christmas, there they were, 2 autograph pictures of Arnold Palmer signed "TO Bill", best wishes Arnold Palmer. It turned out, that my friend's day, knew Arnold's dad. So it went from Dave, to Dave's dad, from Dave's dad to Arnold's dad, and from Arnold's dad to Arnold and back again.

Daniel Smith's avatar
Daniel Smith wrote at 2016-09-30 12:07:37+00:00:

I played a tournament at Latrobe Country Club with Arnies Grandaughter! He followed me for the entire front nine and while I was nerve racked he still complimented my game at the end.

Murray Forrest's avatar
Murray Forrest wrote at 2016-09-29 00:07:57+00:00:

I saw Arnold Palmer hit his first golf ball in the U.K. off the first tee of Pormarnock Golf Club in Ireland in June 1960 before the start of the Canada Cup (now known as the World Cup). The week prior he had won The US Open at Cherry Hills shooting 65 in the final round, speculation was that due to the U.S. Open win he would not come for The Canada Cup but came he did and captivated the British public like no one before him with his charisma and giving attitude to the masses, British golf and indeed world golf will forever be in his debt.

Dr.YASH SONI's avatar
Dr.YASH SONI wrote at 2016-09-28 23:28:48+00:00:

Saw him many times at Bay hill, Took some photographs, Always admired him with his talent, Fatherly figure, very graceful and lovely smile all the time, we are going to miss this incredible man,the greatest Icon of this generation. I salute him with Honor!!Long Live "King Of Golf "

Jim's avatar
Jim wrote at 2016-09-28 12:46:19+00:00:

I'm lucky to have met Arnie and shaken hands with him on several occasions at Bay Hill. One night I was going to the Ritz Carlton in Orlando for dinner and he was standing out front of the hotel by himself waiting for the car valet. As I approached him, I said, hello, Mister Palmer. He smiled and asked how I was doing and if I was playing at Bay Hill. I said, I was the next day. He either mistook me for someone else or he remembered the times we met before at Bay Hill... which is unbelievable. The next day, he showed up at the first hole in a golf cart to watch us tee-off. I was nervous, but I was able to hit my drive well. He waved to us and gave us a thumbs up. Wow!

Rick Montgomery's avatar
Rick Montgomery wrote at 2016-09-28 06:15:26+00:00:


Bill Hammett's avatar
Bill Hammett wrote at 2016-09-28 03:42:04+00:00:

In 1968 Arnold Palmer was the first golf pro I ever saw. He was getting out of a helicopter which landed on the East Course at Wentworth before playing in the World Matchplay event. A magical time for me rememberedl like it was yesterday.

Randy C's avatar
Randy C wrote at 2016-09-28 01:21:12+00:00:

It was in the mid 80's at Augusta, on Wednesday, par 3 day. My wife and I got there early and snagged a position in the front row of #6 green, right behind the flagstick. The pin was in the front center of the green and every group of golfers that came through this hole hit shots past the pin, close to us. I had on a wide brim straw hat and binniculars and I could see incoming shots landing close to us and even some into the patrons. One incoming shot in particular was going to hit me and there was no place to move in the crowded gallery. So I took off my hat to protect my face and head, and before i knew it, there was a golf ball in my hat. So I sat the hat with the ball inside on the fringe. As the golfers approached the green we all recognized Arnold Palmer. As the other pros tended to their golf balls, Arnie looked around for his. We all pointed to hat indicating where his ball was. Mr. Palmer greeted us warmly and asked who owned the hat? He then asked if he could chip my hat onto the green. I said of couse and he chipped my big straw hat gently onto the green and as my hat rolled over, the ball came out, rolled 30 feet right into the cup. What a hat trick!

Dan's avatar
Dan wrote at 2016-09-27 23:23:41+00:00:

Arnie was in Portland for the first Fred Meyer Challenge and had made arrangements to come to Astoria and go Salmon Fishing. He flew down from Hillsboro but fog prevented his landing. He flew back and called and asked if we would hold the boat if he drove down. Well but of course. An hour later I walked up to the parking lot just as he arrived, driving his own car and I directed him where to park. As he walked toward me I happened on to an old friend Jim who had been the best man at my wedding. Jim asked who I was fishing with and I told him Arnold Palmer to which he replied "yeah, and I going out with Jack Nicholas. At that moment, I turned Jim around and said " here in Arnold now Jim" and Arnie being Arnie, stuck out his hand and said "glad to meet you Jim" as we walked past and on to the boat. I looked back and whispered to Jim "where's Jack?" Poor Jim was speechless for hours.

We ended up catching a dozen salmon on the boat and Arnie had them all shipped back to Latrobe where he held a salmon dinner for his club the following weekend. What a man!

Gordon's avatar
Gordon wrote at 2016-09-27 21:24:23+00:00:

My younger brother meet Arnold at St Andrews a few years ago in one of the local pubs adjacent to the course. Arnold told him he drops by every time he visits St Andrews as a tribute to an old caddie he used when playing the Open. My brother and his friends got a nice picture each and offered to buy him a drink which he politely declined. My brother and friends said thank you and moved away . A few minutes later Arnold had paid the barmaid and ordered them a drink each which is something I know my brother will remember forever. Great guy with an amazing amount of time for others

Richard's avatar
Richard wrote at 2016-09-27 21:06:30+00:00:

Mr. Palmer got my attention in the early 60s with his personality and his way of attacking the courses. I became hooked on the game. Never played all that well. Hit enough good shots to keep me coming back. Was able to pass on my love for the game to my three oldest sons who still play (and play well). At 78 my hopes of that "round to remember" is all but over, but we still get to a local course every once in a while to enjoy the game of games. THANK YOU Arnie.

Nicky's avatar
Nicky wrote at 2016-09-27 20:27:28+00:00:

Two of Arnold's books were my guides 40 years ago when I gave up fieldhockey and switched to golf. The first one was "My game and yours" and the other "The nine bad shots of golf and what to do about them". Stil reread them from time time. He was a great simplifier!

Bill C's avatar
Bill C wrote at 2016-09-27 20:25:20+00:00:

After my father passed away when I was eight years old my aunt who was an avid golfer and fan started taking me to the Insurance City Open in Wethersfield Ct.My first tournament in 1955 armed with my autograph book and periscope at the eighteenth hole I approached the winner and he pushed me aside saying out of the way kid.The following year when Arnold Palmer won I got his autograph and a big smile.

I have not missed the tournament since and also got to caddy in it unfortunately not for Mr. Palmer.Played his great course at Bay Hill but regrettably didn't get to meet him there.

He will be missed by all who have a passion for the game of golf but his legacy will endure forever.

Robyn Jacobson's avatar
Robyn Jacobson wrote at 2016-09-27 19:57:23+00:00:

I met Arnold here in Portland Oregon, I was a volunteer at a Fred Meyer charity golf tournament. I was wearing a pink shirt just like his and he came up and said "nice shirt". He had such a sweet Angelic presence, and I was honored to have shook his hand!!

Herold Hartl's avatar
Herold Hartl wrote at 2016-09-27 19:26:21+00:00:

Had I known that the Arnold Palmer Picture series to help improving peoples play that ran for a Long time in some British papers in the late 1960s would be the my first "feel" of Golf, I might have played more attention to them. My wife and I got "infected by the Golf bacillus" here in Austria, after our retirement, in 2001. We played in many countries since then and are still going to do so.

John Trice's avatar
John Trice wrote at 2016-09-27 19:22:40+00:00:

From the moment I fell in love with/golf at age 11 back in 1965, Arnold Palmer was my hero. Fast forward years later when, as an air traffic controller, a pilot friend of mine, returning from Latrobe, said he had a surprise for me. It was an autographed cap from the King himself! I was thrilled! Then I explained how we federal gov't workers were not supposed to accept any gifts from pilots. But before I could see any disappointment in my friend's face, I quickly said that I felt I could make an exception in this case. However, I explained to him that I'd probably never wear it. He looked puzzled, until I responded with"Are you kidding? I'd be afraid of getting it dirty! Or maybe losing it!" But over these past few years, I've done 2 things. First, I overcame my own pessimism of thinking that if I wrote him a thank you note that w/all the mail he gets, he would most likely never see it. So although written late, I would like to think he read it. Especially after I'd seen a TV special on him about how he and his family save all his mail. So I'm glad I wrote that note. And secondly, as for that cap? I decided I'd wear it every year during his birthday week in his honor. After this recent Sept. 10th, I had put it away. But this week? In his honor, I have pulled it out again. And am proudly wearing it as I write this. After playing golf yesterday, I drank a toast to him. My beverage? An Arnold Palmer! Of course!

Bill's avatar
Bill wrote at 2016-09-27 19:21:36+00:00:

I met Mr. Palmer in the Travel Channel booth at a cable convention when they were trying to launch The Golf Channel. With my newly acquired Golf Channel hat in hand I walked up & said I understood that right up at the top of the list of the 5 things every real golfer needed to do was SHAKE HANDS WITH THE KING. Mr. Palmer broke into a huge grin reached out shook my hand and offered to sign my hat. The Man had an infectious smile & a killer grip that left a permanent impression on this self admitted golf addicted hacker. LONG LIVE THE KING!

George Y's avatar
George Y wrote at 2016-09-27 19:09:46+00:00:

The last pro tournament I attended with my Dad was a practice round for the 1974 US Open at Winged Foot. Since he was having some trouble seeing distances I had brought along binoculars so that he might see approach shots land on the greens. And, he wanted to see Mr. Palmer. We got a good spot directly behind the 10th tee, a long, at that time, par 3 playing at about 210. It had a huge tree on the right side that hung over the green a bit, or at least it seemed to from the tee. I was giving my dad the rundown of where each player's tee shot was landing and if they made any long putts. Soon the crowd around us swelled and there was a lot of movement. As I was watching players putt out I felt an arm on my shoulder. I thought it was my Dad asking for the binoculars but the voice was unmistakable. Mr. Palmer was asking how the hole was playing that day and what clubs most players were using. He said to us that his eyes weren't as good as they used to be and wanted to know where the pin was that day. We told him it was a little back into the green a little right of center but that most players had been missing to the left. When it was his turn to hit he took very little time and striped a long iron to the right center of the green, turned around and shrugged and said "I might not be able to see 'em land but I can still hit 'em." What a memory!

Vic Alfons's avatar
Vic Alfons wrote at 2016-09-27 18:52:55+00:00:

I was a member at Portland golf club and I was working the players parking lot, when mr Plamer show up at the gate, he did not have ticket for his car and the guard would not let him in. He stated you don't a public course I could played. We all laughed they let him in.

Erik's avatar
Erik wrote at 2016-09-27 18:31:17+00:00:

A few years back, some friends and I played some courses on the Ring of Kerry in Ireland. One was Tralee -- a fabulous experience. This Friday and Sunday, some friends and I are playing the Arnold Palmer Course at Stonewall Resort, W. Va. We've all been asked the question at some time "If there was one person you would like to play a round of golf with, who would it be?" There was only one answer to that question. While he was a decade or so older than me, I never really imagined that he would die. With his marvelous and lasting contributions to the game of golf and life, he won't.

Jack Ivers's avatar
Jack Ivers wrote at 2016-09-27 17:50:02+00:00:

Arnold Palmer is the one responsible for why I love golf what a great example of a man,golfer,business man he was, there will not be another one like him ever one can take a page from him for the great example he has set for all of us like golf or not wished I could have met him in person.

Jerry's avatar
Jerry wrote at 2016-09-27 17:28:18+00:00:

I volunteered at the 2002 Senior Open, and before my afternoon shift I joined Arnie's Army as play began Thursday morning. He made a long birdie putt on 2, and for a golden moment the scoreboard once again read "1 - Palmer ".

Harvey Inouye's avatar
Harvey Inouye wrote at 2016-09-27 16:29:29+00:00:

How many know that Mr. Palmer set a world record. He flew a Lear Jet around the world. The event was for the Aviation Writers Association Conference held in Denver, Co. in I believe l974--Not sure of date or year. We were updated hourly on his progress around the globe. When he landed, he was whisked to the Conference to brief the AWA members. I was the audio visual technician and met Mr. Palmer. After the briefing and news conference he came over and thanked me for a good job.

Bob Reed's avatar
Bob Reed wrote at 2016-09-27 16:17:21+00:00:

I must have been a pre-teen on vacation with my family in Florida. We lived in Michigan where I was born. But a few years before, my parents had bought a condo in Hillsborough Beach and we went down twice a year for Christmas and Easter break.

We belonged to Farmington Country Club in our hometown and a few years before, a young assistant pro named Mark had spent a few summers there and had become quite close to my dad. But now Mark was at Bay Hill and my dad thought it would be fun to drive up to Orlando and see him.

We arrived at the club and headed for the pro shop. As we approached the door it opened and Mr. Palmer stepped out with his wife, Winnie. We, of course, were stunned. This was my dad's hero. Thinking back now, I'm sure my dad must have been hoping that Mark would find Mr. Palmer and introduce him sometime during our visit.

We were all a little surprised because "Arnie" had a white gauze patch over one of his eyes. Looking, rather, like a pastel pirate. Being the precocious 12-13-year-old that I was I blurted out, "Hey Mr. Plamer what happened to your eye".My parents both gave me "that look". But he was very gracious and kindly explained that he had been in a bunker recently and had gotten some sand in his eye. It had become irritated and thus the patch. Winnie was rolling her eyes and teasing him about being a knucklehead for doing it.

We all laughed and wished him a speedy recovery and were just about to make our way passed him and into the pro shop when one of their grandkids ran up and asked Winnie what she was making him for dinner. Without batting an eyelash she replied, "Fried farts in buttermilk. You're gonna love it". She turned to us and winked and we all burst out laughing. Especially my mom. She thought that was the funniest thing she had ever heard. Made funnier because it had been said by Mrs. Arnold Plamer.

For me it was kind of weird. Here was Arnold Palmer. The King. A very famous man. World famous. And he and his wife were joking around and cutting up with us. A group of total strangers. It was the first really famous person I had met who made me realize that the fame and celebrity that had been laid upon him was just that. A facade. That he was just a person like me or my parents, but who had done some extraordinary things. The fame, the money, the attention had nothing to do with who he was as a person. It had not changed him.

In my professional life, I have encountered many famous people and, unfortunately, a number of them have been changed by their good fortune. Not terribly pleasant people to be around.

For the next twenty years, whenever I was visiting my folks in Florida and asked my mom what she was making for dinner she replied with a wry smile. "Fried farts in buttermilk. And we'd all laugh and remember our special day when we met "the King" and "Mrs. King".

ADAM WALTER's avatar
ADAM WALTER wrote at 2016-09-27 16:09:44+00:00:

My Mum, who was lady captain of the Shipley Golf Club, West Yorkshire, England in 1992, often said that the greatest moment she had on a golf course was not playing but walking shoulder to shoulder and talking with Arnie Palmer down one of the fairways at St Ives, Bingley during a Lawrence Batley sponsored tournament around 1980.It was a memorable moment since she knew how privileged she was to share some time with the one of the greatest golfers that ever lived.

Joey B's avatar
Joey B wrote at 2016-09-27 15:57:26+00:00:

I used to live in Orlando in the mid 90s right down the street from Bay Hill. I would occasionally play Bay Hill and one day after playing, I went to the driving range in the late afternoon to work on my swing. I was the only one out there and after a while Mr. Palmer showed up. He went to the other side of the range to hit balls and I left him alone at the time. When I saw that he was finishing up, I went up to him to mention that I had seen him and Jack in person play for a filming of Shell's Wonderful World of Golf at Pinehurst #2 in 1994, as I am from that area of North Carolina. We talked about Wake Forest and NC State (my alma mater) sports. He asked me to hit a few balls so he could see my swing and helped me with my grip. After a few minutes, he shook my hand, thanked me for coming out and said he had to get home for dinner. I will never forget it.

Bbo Hance's avatar
Bbo Hance wrote at 2016-09-27 15:54:02+00:00:

In the early days of the Champions tour(then called the Senior tour, a tournament was held at Bent Tree C.C. in Dallas. My father-in-law had never seen a PGA tournament even though an avid golf fan. Obviously being older he could relate better to the senior players. I took him on a Saturday. We would advance a few holes and let the field come thru us. Knowing Palmer was a few holes from us, we decided to go the tee box of a hole a few holes from the finish, wait on him and then follow him to the club house. In doing that, we saw probably 20 pros tee off there. Behind us and running away from the course was an apartment complex with balconies filled with people watching the action. All the pros that teed off then took off down the fairway directly toward the green. Not Arnie. He chose to walk directly 90 degrees away from the fairway and along the entire stretch of apartments. He waved and thanked every group in the balconies for coming out. By the time he finished he had walked at least 400 yards out of the way to get to his second shot. When I returned home and looked up the victories of all those we had seen pay zero attention to the fans in the apartments. Arnie had won 9 more tournaments that all of them combined. They probably never thought about it. That is the difference I am trying to point out. Arnie thought about it, appreciated it, and expressed it.

Peter's avatar
Peter wrote at 2016-09-27 15:47:23+00:00:

I was staying at desert inn walking thru casino Mr Palmer was shooting craps walked up and told I was a fan sorry to bother him he was gracious asked me where I was from and my name a smile you never could for get a loss that hurts rest in peace

Gordon Marcum's avatar
Gordon Marcum wrote at 2016-09-27 15:47:02+00:00:

My first opportunity to meet Mr. Palmer was in 1964 at the Oklahoma City Open. I was about to start law school and my summer employer knew how much I loved golf so he gave me the day off to go and walk around with Arnie who teed off at 7:30 Thursday morning. It was before ropes and not many fans early so he struck up a conversation with me as we walked. It was like walking with your grandfather. We talked about my Dad being a fighter pilot during the war, my experience as a pilot and my golf game. He could not have been nicer or kinder. My second encounter was in 1996 in the Woodlands, Texas to open a new nine holes of his design named after his Dad. The day was as miserably cold as it could be in Texas. He and Jeff Maggert could only stand to playing 9 holes before we all froze to death. Of course, we all formed a line to get his autograph on books, shirts, and hats. During my Army service, Arnie's family Doctor's son was a close friend and golfing partner so when I got my turn to visit with him,it was like old home week. He asked me to please stay around so we could visit more when he finished. We jumped in his chauffeured car and headed for the PGA course where they were holding the Houston All College Championship Tournament and he was to speak to the group. His presentation about the love of golf was so fantastic he was crying along with most of us. We finished there and headed to airport to see his airplane and see him off before his car took me back to my car. Like Mr. Tupper above, it was a lifetime experience and memory to be treasured.

Jeanne Gardner's avatar
Jeanne Gardner wrote at 2016-09-27 15:45:12+00:00:

During a lightning and rain delay at a senior's golf tournament at Bunker Hills in Coon Rapids, MN, all golfers headed for cover. As my husband and I were headed for the pro shop, we noticed Arnold Palmer sitting in a gold Cadillac with his wife Winnie. They were eating sandwiches and relaxing.

There was a temporary fence that kept the public away from the cars that were driven by the golf pros in the tournament. There were no other golfers to be seen anywhere. As we watched, Arnie got out of his car and proceeded to sign autographs for the many people who were waiting within arms-length to see a beloved golf hero.

Arnie signed autographs, one after another, and finally the siren sounded to let the golfers know they could get back on the course. As Arnie walked right past my husband and me, my husband said, "Good luck Arnie, go get 'em". To which Arnie replied, "I'm only guing to the bathroom".

Twenty minutes later we saw him in the middle of one of the fairways as he hit an approach shot to the green....He looked right over at us as if he recognized us, and with a huge grin, Arnie waived at us and gave us the "thumbs-up" gesture with his right hand. It seemed like we had known him for years. He made everyone feel the same way.

David Brown's avatar
David Brown wrote at 2016-09-27 15:34:12+00:00:

Rest in peace Arni thank you for the memories what a gent you were

When I was the Head wine and floor waiter at the Prince of Wales in Southport 1960s I had the pleasure of looking after him and his wife twice when he played at Birkdale he was polite as was most golfers in those days, no side to him at all, I missed a chance when he offered me and my fiancé a job in his hotel in Florida, I wonder how that would of worked out for us, we will never know, your family are in my thoughts on this sad day, God bless to you all, I truly hope he passed away peaceful I still have the head cover you gave me I have treasured it all those years, I remember that you had to play with Dunlop clubs as they were your sponsors in those days and you had to go every day and practise come back and put lead around the heal of the club to make them suit you

can you imagen that today, he was real class one off the people

Dorothy Gray's avatar
Dorothy Gray wrote at 2016-09-27 15:33:42+00:00:

Many years ago I had the pleasure of being in line to get Arnold Palmer's autograph. he had just completed his final round at one of the PGA Senior's events in Blaine, MN. As my daughter and I were finally standing in front of Arnie, he stood up to shake our hands. I held his hand and told him, "I just love you". With that wonderfully handsome smile, he said,"And I love you too. Thank you for coming to the golf tournament today".

Arnold Palmer made my daughter and I feel like we'd known him for years.

Alan's avatar
Alan wrote at 2016-09-27 15:30:55+00:00:

Always there & available to the public - greet w a smile or sign autographs : unlike Tiger Woods . ( Karma ) ??

Doug Gardner's avatar
Doug Gardner wrote at 2016-09-27 15:29:16+00:00:

I ran into Arnold Palmer about 15 years ago when he was playing golf in Blaine, MN while he was on the PGA Senior's Tour. He was coming out of the clubhouse after finishing his round on Sunday morning. As he was getting into his golf cart, he walked right next to me.

I reached out my hand to shake his hand and to say "thank you" for all he had done for golf. He had a very firm but very warm grip. He held on to my hand and put his left hand on my wrist. Arnie said, "No, thank you for showing your support for golf. It's because people like you are what keeps golf going in a positive direction." (Obviously Arnie never saw me golf.)

About 20 minutes later, as Arnold Palmer did for many years, he flew his jet at a very low altitude over the golf course, rocking his wings 3 or 4 times as if saying "goodbye" to the people on the golf course.

Buz Knyal's avatar
Buz Knyal wrote at 2016-09-27 15:27:47+00:00:

The year was 1962. I was 15. I was caddying in the Western Open at Medinah. The week prior, Mr. Palmer lost a playoff to Jack Nicklaus at the US Open.

He finished back in the pack as did my loop, Johnny Pott. He was done more than an hour after the leaders, Billy Casper and Jacky Cupit the ultimate winner. Myself and another caddy were walking around the clubhouse area and the crowd stirred near the door to the men's locker room. Mr. Palmer walked out sporting lime green pants and a yellow blazer. What a sight.

Everyone had a good wish, a endearing comment or handshake for him. Watching him was mesmerizing. After a few minutes of chatter he walked right next to where I was standing at the concession stand. He said hello to both of us and, since we had our caddy shirts on, he asked who we worked for. The 1962 Western Open may have been the last tour stop in history where the players had to us local caddies. Johnny Pott, I answered (too loud and too quick because I was nervous being there with him) to which he replied, "How did he play the 13th hole?"

After a very brief conversation the server was now standing in front of him. "I'll have a burger and a beer? What about you? The same?" "Sure" I stammered. That was my first taste of alcohol. So, Arnold "freekin" Palmer bought me my first drink.

Many years later I met him again and related the story over a cocktail in the bar at Bay Hill. He looked at me, then the drink and said, "I guess it took."

Paul Zingg's avatar
Paul Zingg wrote at 2016-09-27 15:25:18+00:00:

A haiku poem for Arnie:

Arnie's Army,

hanging on hope --

Augusta in April.

Tom Rutledge's avatar
Tom Rutledge wrote at 2016-09-27 15:24:45+00:00:

One wink, one smile and one thumbs up Dallas Open #11 have lasted for over 50 years!

Henry (Hank) Swierczynski's avatar
Henry (Hank) Swierczynski wrote at 2016-09-27 15:20:05+00:00:

There I was at the Ligonier PA Steeple chase races in the late 60's. Arnie and I helped push a car out of the grassy mud parking lot. We were both dressed in sports coats but gave it our all to get the car moving. My greatest memory of that day was that Arnie jumped in to help even though he was all dressed up. I was amazed at the size of his hands!

Dale Russell's avatar
Dale Russell wrote at 2016-09-27 15:09:14+00:00:

I remember most watching Arnie on TV with my Dad in the early days of the sixties. I remember also how the tournament winner received $30 thousand...astonishing!!

tdSHIPS's avatar
tdSHIPS wrote at 2016-09-27 15:05:11+00:00:

Played many of his courses - Aviara in Carlsbad is my favorite, there's just such a special feel to it. I actually met him at Bay Hill, sitting in my cart before heading to the 1st tee. A cart goes buzzing by and Mr Palmer, making the turn with a sandwich in his hand buzzes by in his cart. He catches sight of me, turns and waves. I was completely awestruck.

Paul's avatar
Paul wrote at 2016-09-27 14:56:17+00:00:

Remember Sunday's in the 50's and 60's checking in with golf on TV to see where Arnie was and whether a "charge " was in progress . I remember Arnie losing a seven stroke lead at Olympic Club in San Francisco, and Arnie blasting out of the trap in front of the 18th green at Augusta into the trap in back. It was really a boom or bust. In any case, it was always exciting. Thanks, Arnie, for all the good times.

John fowler's avatar
John fowler wrote at 2016-09-27 14:54:36+00:00:

His signature alone made him a legend

ALAN P's avatar
ALAN P wrote at 2016-09-27 14:47:46+00:00:

I had the privilege of meeting the King at a charity golf event where he autographed a this day the only autograph I have. I also met him at Augusta as he was coming off his next to last appearance at the Masters...shook his hand....asked him if we would see him at the Champion's tour stop in Massachusetts, and in typical Arnie fashion, his was response was "only if I get my game in shape". Yesterday I played a round with some tears in my eyes and that autographed hat in my bag........Broke 80 for the first time in years!! He's the reason I picked up the game 54 years ago.....Thanks for everything Mr. Palmer. Rest in Peace.

Steve Smith's avatar
Steve Smith wrote at 2016-09-27 14:46:35+00:00:

I never met him or even saw him in person, but I bought his book - "My Game and Yours" in a used bookstore many years ago.

I've read it countless times and the title says it all.

His whole philosophy was to keep it simple and above all enjoy the greatest of games.

Thanks to the King

Bob Moje's avatar
Bob Moje wrote at 2016-09-27 14:43:46+00:00:

When The Senior Tour was just starting they played at Hermitage CC in Richmond Va. I was driving down the interstate and they had a banner so I turned off and went in. They had a tee sheet and I saw the players on the tenth tee and realized Arnold was in front of them,so I caught up with his group. As they got out on the back there were almost no people just about a dozen of us walking with that group.

I tried to be respectful and quiet but others walking along weren't and were making comments loud enough for the players to hear.

Pretty soon Arnold was chatting and talking with all of us as he played. He was as warm and engaging as anyone I have ever met. He would have been succesful no matter what he decided to do. All golfers should be glad that he chose to pursue golf instead of being a paint salesmen.

Virgilio de Padua's avatar
Virgilio de Padua wrote at 2016-09-27 14:42:36+00:00:

Stayed at Bayhill, for a weekend away of golf , hoping of course to catch a glimpse of The Man. There he was at breakfast...he took on all comers with grace & ease...and there were many. I ate my breakfast and hung back, feeling bad for him. He hadn't been able to touch his meal! I was hesitant to even approach, convincing myself it was enough to have been in the room. I turned back to my meal & I heard that voice say, "are you going to come over , or just stare?" He was smiling but could sense Imwas embarrassed. "Mr Palmer, you haven't even had time to eat..." I said quietly. He said, well thank you for thinking of me, but I run the place & I think they can heat up my plate." Everyone laughed & I was immediately at ease. I said, "I just wanted to know, if you would show me how your father set your hands on the club. My father told me that story & it would mean the world to me if you would." He said "sure, but Imdont have a club handy here". I said, "I do!" & went to my table where I had stashed my pitching wedge...He laughed out loud & said "didn't you come prepared!" People laughed, but he made it feel like it was just the two of us. He put his large weathered hands on mine & set the grip and said "there, don't ever move them". I thanked him profusely & went to go back to my table, when he said, "come by my office later, you're gonna need a picture." My father was right, he was & always will be The King.

Ray's avatar
Ray wrote at 2016-09-27 14:39:14+00:00:

It was a beautiful late Friday afternoon in April and Arnold Palmer was playing his last hole in his last Masters. He barely got his drive to the dogleg and was going to try to hit a driver off the deck for his second shot. However, since the group ahead was still on the green, he had to wait. There were at least 5,000 of us lining the fairway to watch the King play his last hole in the Masters and it was so quiet you could hear a pine needle drop to the ground. The moment was spellbinding to all present when Arnold finally said in his familiar voice that was heard by all 5,000: "Somebody say something; this isn't a funeral." It is a moment that will always be etched in my mind as Arnold Palmer really was The King.

Sharen Valentine's avatar
Sharen Valentine wrote at 2016-09-27 14:37:52+00:00:

For several years, I volunteered at Peter Jacobsen's Fred Meyer Challenge in Portland, Oregon. Some players couldn't be bothered to sign autographs for fans but Arnold graciously signed autographs for at least an hour and a half. This was around 2003 and it was quite warm but Arnold always cared about his fans. I will always remember that. RIP, Arnie!

Bob Moje's avatar
Bob Moje wrote at 2016-09-27 14:35:57+00:00:

When the Senior Tour was just getting started they played at Hermitage CC in Richmond Va. I had been working and driving back there was a banner on the interstate so I pulled off and went. I walked in and they handed me a tee sheet, I saw who was teeing off on ten and saw that "the King was one group in front. I caught up and walked along. As we got further out on the back there was no crowd just about a dozen of us walking with the players and the caddies.

I tried to be respectful and quiet, but a few others were talking to Arnold and before long he was chatting with all of us, making jokes and having a grand time.

He was as warm and engaging as anyone I have ever met. He would have been successful at anything he choose to do. Every golfer should be glad he decided not to be a paint salesmen.

Diane's avatar
Diane wrote at 2016-09-27 14:31:09+00:00:

I had the pleasure to meet him last August at his Latribe CC after a golfing event I was in. I sat next to him in his golf cart that he actually played that day and was as polite and genuine as I heard. I have the picture of us hanging in my foyer forever. I am truly saddened and touched by his passing. I can't imagine what the family is going thru. Your spirit lives on Mr Palmer as I will tee it up for you today.

Bobby McQuaid's avatar
Bobby McQuaid wrote at 2016-09-27 14:26:25+00:00:

My father was an individual who measured men by their character and integrity. As a young boy he took me to Merion on the day of the ProAm before the tournament. As Palmer walked by off of one of the tee boxes my dad said to me "unlike many of the arrogant and self centered horses asses out here there goes a man of integrity". Palmer overheard him, stopped briefly, smiled and nodded his head at my father and I. That small act demonstrated to me as a youngster what it meant to be known for your character and integrity, something that stuck with me through my 35 years as an Army Officer.

Tim Gavrich

Senior Writer

Tim Gavrich is a Senior Writer for Golf Advisor and the Managing Editor of the Golf Vacation Insider newsletter. Follow him on Twitter @TimGavrich and on Instagram @TimGavrich.