˘ I designed the first golf course in China 30 years ago, but
I’m still a boy from western Pennsylvania.
˘ My father [Deacon] was the person who taught me
everything about the game, from etiquette to playing. But the
most important lesson was discipline. He was the greenkeeper and pro at Latrobe CC, and I was allowed on the
golf course only at certain times. I was his helper at certain
times. I started driving a steel-wheeled tractor when I was 6
years old. He was the boss. He told me how to drive it, and I
remember very well driving it as his instructions stated.
˘ I could play with the caddies on Monday morning and
with my mother after the course was closed in the evenings.
That was my golf. I could hit balls from the maintenance
building, and that’s what I did. My father would come over, and
his instruction usually lasted about 10 minutes. The things he
said to me were very firm and, of course, he reminded me that
I was not a member of the club and I wasn’t to act like one.
The members were always nice to me because they knew my
father was pretty tough.
˘ Of course, I did things that were against his rules, such as
sneaking out and hitting golf balls when I wasn’t supposed to.
And I caught hell for that. But the work ethic was constant.
˘ There was no money. The Depression was very heavy
in that part of the country. And with World War II we had gas
84, 62-time PGA tOUR WiNNeR, LAtROBe, PA. ˘ interviewed by Ron Sirak, Photographed by Dom Furore