EDITORIAL: Arnie & Me
The year was 2004 and I was set to serve as a volunteer at the CVS Charity Classic at Rhode Island Country Club.
This was my first year volunteering and it so happened to be the first and only year that Arnold Palmer would play in the tournament.
Just a few months earlier, Palmer played in The Masters for the the last time.
My job at the CVS Classic was a Marshall, meaning I would stand there and hold up the quiet sign on the tee box or greens, whichever they said.
At this particular moment, I was on the tee when Palmer and his group, that included co-hosts Brad Faxon and Billy Andrade came to the tee.
Arnie’s Army followed.
Standing there in the corner of the tee box with my “QUIET PLEASE” sign Palmer came over to me.
“And how are you doing today?” He asked me.
I told him I was doing good and he smiled at me before his group began to tee off.
“You mean I have to hit again?” He quipped to the group. The crowd laughed.
At this point, Palmer was tiring out and only was playing every other hole, but he still walked every fairway and waived to all the fans.
Unfortunately, as a volunteer, I was not allowed to ask for pictures or an autograph and so I did not.
However, it’s this memory of my brief conversation with Palmer that will last a lifetime.
This week we get set to celebrate Arnie at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.