Hello again Valley golfers!
Today is one of the “big four” golf days of the year. And for those of us who were lucky enough to grow up with great fathers, today is our day to say just that.
The USGA gives us this very special day each year — the final round of the U.S. Open on Father’s Day.
One of the top father-sons golfing family in the Valley is the Porter men.
If you follow Valley golf, you’ve heard of Scott and Mike before (see Greatest Golfer results the last two years).
Growing up playing in local junior tournaments, we all knew the Porters.
I was first friends with a third Porter brother — Greg, the youngest who lives in North Carolina.
All three — golfing brothers. All three — scratch golfers.
All three taught under the guiding eyes of their dad, Tim — arguably the best golfer in the house.
Over the years, Mr. Porter taught his sons the game.
How to swing.
How to act.
How to score.
(And eventually, how to bet and when to press.)
But as good as they all became, I don’t know that they ever passed their teacher.
When I asked Michael and Scott to share a favorite story with me about competing with their dad, they brought up their experiences in the National Father Son Invitational held annually in North Carolina. With past champions like the Hochs and the Kites, you know it’s a serious tournament.
And the Porters were serious contenders.
Over a span of about 20 years, the Porters had around 25 teams compete. Michael and Tim played for 17 straight years. Scotty and Tim played together five-seven times. And Greg and Tim competed once.
And while Michael and Scott both managed to claim second place finishes while paired with Tim (in different years), they really talked more about their time spent with Dad:
The bonding from the week; the special time spent competing in the morning and bass fishing in the afternoon.
“Just great memories with Dad,” Scotty said as the greatest result.
If you’re needing the Porters today, you’ll find them where you always find them on Father’s Day:
Teeing off together — father and sons. Greg will have to sit this round out as he’s moving into a new home in North Carolina. (The family also manages to golf together on Mother’s Day and Thanksgiving.)
And when their round today is done, the men will find a television to watch the final round of the Father’s Day tradition — the U.S. Open.
I’m sure I speak for all of us “sons” (and daughters!) when I say: To my father, and to Tim Porter, and to all the fathers out there who spent time with “us” kids:
Your encouragement; your support; your guidance; your unending love; it all made us the people we are today.
Thank you. We love you. And Happy Father’s Day.
As always, thanks for reading, and until next week, “Hit ’em Straight.”
Jonah Karzmer is a former player at YSU and a member at The Lake Club. He works in insurance when not writing a golf column every Sunday in The Vindicator. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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