GROWING UP WITH GOLF’S GREATEST:1971 U.S.Open Lee Trevino 1991 U.S.Open Payne Stewart
By Jimmy Steinfeldt
HOLLYWOOD (Perfect Golf Today) 11/11/17/–I shoulda of been a pro golfer. I’ve been playing the game my whole life. I’m excellent at giving friends tips to improve their game. But being a pro golfer—that’s a whole nother thing.
When I was a little kid I met the greats of golf at the 1971 U.S. Open. Trevino, Weiskpof, Casper, Littler, Moody, Miller, Rodriquez, Player, Snead both Sr. and Jr., and the winner Tony Jacklin. They all stayed at a hotel a few blocks from my house. I walked to the hotel every morning and waited in the lobby.
They all signed autographs for me, this little local kid. The only people I didn’t meet there were Jack Nicklaus, and Arnold Palmer. They were big shots and stayed at a fancy hotel downtown.
So I went to the Open with my mom. At the Open I met Jack Nicklaus who signed my U.S. Open program. Palmer on the other hand was another story. After he finished the 18th hole I followed him right up to the shack where they sign their scorecards.
I was about to follow him into the shack when he said I had to wait outside. This was in the days when there was almost no security. After he signed his scorecard he signed my program with his beautiful signature. My U.S. Open experience was complete. Big thanks to my mom for taking me to the Open.
Some years later, I don’t remember the year, I was part of a group of 6 young people who got to follow Lee Trevino and Laura Baugh as they played 18 holes. It was like getting a free lesson from these champions. Years later I photographed Nicklaus, Ballesteros, and Norman at the 1991 U.S. Open This was when security was minimal and I was practically part of Jack’s entourage.
Today I play whenever I can with my Rock N Roll friends. Ideal foursome: Alice Cooper, Bill Murray, Jack Nicholson, and ME.
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