About 15 years ago I had a brief encounter with Dr. Sifford. I didn’t really know his story, only his label that history had given him, “first African American to play on the PGA Tour.” I wish I would have been as knowledgeable as I am today. I would have been more interested and indeed humbled to meet him. He endured things that men like Jackie Robinson can only understand. When I think of Dr. Sifford, I always imagine the pictures of public restrooms labeled; men, women and colored. The strength this man showed the world is remarkable. I also ask the question that is become all to familiar to me; Why did I NOT learn about men like this in school? (rhetorical, I know why)  I cannot get too detailed because you see, I am a white man and I grew up with all the privileges of a white man. I will never grasp or even begin to understand that struggle that so many went through and it pains me to say, still go through today. I have many black friends that are in the golf business as tour pros, instructors and managers and I am grateful to men like Charlie Sifford that paved their way. Living to 92 years old is an incredible achievement but living the life he did is even greater. Rest easy sir, you’ve earned it.

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