|Birth ( Age )
||July 14, 1934
||Robert Lee Elder
||Former Professional Golfer
|Wife / Girlfriend
||( Rose Harper - Divorced ), Sharon Elder- Present
||Pompano Beach, Florida
||$20 Million ( estimated)
Robert Lee Elder is a retired American Professional Golfer . In 1975, he became the primary African-American to play within the Masters Tournament, where he missed the cut.Elder was invited to the tournament after he won the 1974 Monsanto Open.
Early Life and Family : one among ten children, Elder was born in Dallas, Texas, to Charles and Almeta Elder. He was nine years old when his father was killed in Germany during war II, and his mother died three months later. At the age of 12, Elder found himself moving from one ghetto to a different before being sent to l. a. , California to measure together with his aunt.
Elder frequently cut classes to figure as a caddie, and after two years at Manual Arts highschool he dropped out.Elder met his first wife, Rose Harper, at a golf tournament in Washington, D.C. the 2 married in 1966. After getting married, Rose gave up her golfing career to become his manager. They later divorced.Now Sharon Elder is the second wife of Lee Elder.
Professional career : Elder didn't play a full round of 18 holes until he was 16. He took jobs in pro shops and locker rooms, additionally to caddying where he developed his game by watching his clients, and playing when he had the chance . Elder's game developed sufficiently for him to start out hustling. His career took an enormous step after playing a match with heavyweight boxer Louis , which led to Louis’s golf instructor, Ted Rhodes, taking Elder under his wing for 3 years. Under the tutelage of Rhodes, Elder was ready to polish his game and he began playing in tournaments.
In 1967 Elder raised enough money to attend qualifying school for the PGA Tour. He finished 9th out of a category of 122 and gained his tour card for 1968. That year, he placed 40th on the cash list, bringing in approximately $38,000. The highlight of Elder's rookie season was a memorable playoff loss to Nicklaus at the American Golf Classic. Elder lost to Nicklaus on the fifth hole of overtime .
In 1974, Elder earned his first win on the PGA Tour at the Monsanto Open, which gained him entry to the Masters Tournament in Augusta, Georgia the subsequent year. This marked the primary time that an African American had qualified for the Masters since the tournament began forty-one years earlier in 1934, which coincidentally was Elder's year of birth. Elder shot a 74 on day one and a 78 on day two of the 1975 Masters, missing the cut, but the impact of his presence within the field was clear.In 1979 he became the primary African American to qualify for play within the Ryder Cup. In 1984 at the age of fifty , Elder joined the Senior PGA Tour.
The fight against racism : In 1975,Robert Lee Elder became the primary African American to play within the Masters.Leading up to the tournament, he received substantial amounts of mail . Fearing for his safety, during the week of the tournament he rented two houses in town and kept moving between them, and always had people around him when he visited eat.
At the Monsanto Open in 1968 in Pensacola, Florida, an equivalent tournament at which he claimed his first PGA Tour victory six years later to qualify for the Masters, Elder and other black players on the road were forced to vary their clothes within the parking zone because members of the club wouldn't allow African Americans in their clubhouse.
While playing during a tournament in Memphis, Tennessee, a spectator picked up Elder's ball on a hole and threw it during a hedge. The incident was witnessed by another pro golfer, and Elder was given a free drop.Elder tried to remain focused on the sport , but unlike the bulk of players on the road he was constantly bothered by unruly fans, frequently receiving mail and threatening phone calls.
Seniors Tour Provided New Career Highlights
At age 50 in 1984, Elder entered a replacement arena of competition by joining the Seniors PGA Tour. He won his first tournament during his second year on the circuit and shortly earned a string of victories in such events because the Digital Classic and therefore the Merrill Lynch and Hilton Seniors tournaments. He also racked up two victories abroad within the Coca-Cola slam Japan within the mid-1980s.
In 1990, Elder spoke out against country clubs that also excluded Black golfers from membership. Elder has actively promoted Summer Youth Golf Development Programs, raised money for the United Negro College Fund, and served on the advisory boards of Goodwill Industries.
In April 2021, Elder took part within the traditional ceremonial start to the Masters.
How did lee elder inspire the next generation?
Lee Elder. The man best known as the first African American to play in the Masters has been answering it in some form or another for more than 37 years. What are your recollections from your first trip to Augusta?
"I was scared to death," Elder said without hesitation.
Nearly four decades after that historic event, Elder's chilling words are just as meaningful -- if not even more important. To a younger generation of golfers, some of whom were in the crowd Wednesday at the USGA's headquarters, it was a reminder that it wasn't too long ago that a black man could feel fear on a golf course that went well beyond a daunting tee shot.
Who was the first black player to play in the Masters?
Lee Elder was introduced to a crowd of several hundred on the primary tee of the Masters Tournament on Thursday morning. Forty-six years earlier, on roughly an equivalent spot at Augusta National, Elder had teed off because the first Black man to play within the tournament.