Tour pros, journalists pay tribute to the late, great Pete Dye on social media
With Pete Dye’s passing yesterday, the golf world lost an icon. As the news of Pete’s death at the age of 94 made it’s way around the industry, stories of his life, sense of humor and wicked design philosophy began pouring out onto social media.
Everyone from Jack Nicklaus to our own Jonathan Wall had a Pete Dye story to share. And they paint a picture of a man who was fiercely dedicated to his craft, his family and who had a wicked sense of humor that was evident in his designs and his interactions.
It was Pete who inspired me to start designing courses more than 50 years ago, and so in many ways I owe my second career to him.— Jack Nicklaus (@jacknicklaus) January 10, 2020
I think Pete Dye was the most creative, imaginative and unconventional golf course designer I have ever been around. pic.twitter.com/ostZUh48Eb
Followed Pete. Loved Pete. Barbara & I loved Pete & his wife Alice.— Jack Nicklaus (@jacknicklaus) January 10, 2020
We lost Alice less than a year ago, now Pete today. We lost two wonderful people.
Pete was the most innovative course designer in my lifetime and certainly the golf world should mourn the loss of this great man. pic.twitter.com/UsEPWIOmyA
Today golf has lost a man whose everlasting imprint will never be forgotten. He was the Picasso of golf architecture & changed 20th century golf course design. He started me on my design career & taught & challenged me to be naturally different. RIP my dear friend Pete Dye. pic.twitter.com/ipMWutbCIS— Greg Norman (@SharkGregNorman) January 10, 2020
RIP Pete Dye. What a legend. 🙏😭— Phil Mickelson Tracker (@TrackingPhil) January 9, 2020
So sorry 2 hear of Pete Dye’s passing.A friend to all who ever met him.Genius, unequaled imagination..What I enjoyed a admired most is that he would get down a dirty. On his hands a knees dirty, and that, is when he looked the happiest. RIP Pete. Golf will miss you 🙏— Curtis Strange (@golf_strange) January 10, 2020
While Pete is well-known and loved in professional golf circles, he was also a man of the people. Several anecdotes of Pete calling up a club himself, or getting down and dirty to help make his bold course visions a reality surfaced as well. All of it painting a picture of a man golf will sorely miss.
I had a cool moment as an Assistant Pro at @HolstonHillsCC, the caller ID in the pro shop said “Pete Dye.” I answered, thinking it was someone from his company or one of his golf courses. Nope! It was the man himself! He was such a gentleman and made an impression on me. #PGA https://t.co/m784hL73zR— Braxton Hunter, PGA (@golfbrax02) January 10, 2020
While in my first year as an assistant at @fordplantation during the renovation I had the pleasure of meeting Pete Dye. His eye for architecture and true passion for golf left it's mark not only on the course but on myself. Legends never die. RIP Mr. Dye pic.twitter.com/i9lkncnlL6— Justin Lumpkin (@JLumpkin_380) January 9, 2020
I had the honor of meeting Pete Dye at one of his courses, after we finished our round headed to the 19th hole. He asked how I liked the redesign. I told him it was great and that I birdied the last two.— Drew Carr (@DrewCarr_) January 9, 2020
“You’ve ruined my day” he said, and walked away. Legit pissed.
I took my cassette recorder back to my office and tried to generate a transcript. Spent so much time rewinding and replaying that the tape ribbon broke. I cursed old Pete, just as I've done so many times on his golf courses. A great character and a great architect. RIP Pete /2— Thomas Dunne (@thomasdunne) January 9, 2020
Sneds on Pete Dye: "You respected him because he built some great golf courses, but in the midst of playing them, you hated his guts." Big smile. Fond memories.— Doug Ferguson (@dougferguson405) January 10, 2020
Pete Dye's last full-course design was in Maryland. What I loved most was that it was Pete, Alice and son P.B. teaming up to redesign a course Pete's brother, Andy, originally did. Family all the way through.— Ryan Ballengee (@RyanBallengee) January 9, 2020
Golf in Indiana would not have been the same without Pete’s influence. He moved there after serving in World War II to sell insurance, but wound up becoming a prolific course architect instead. The state, and it’s sports teams, paid tribute to one of their most beloved citizens.
Rest in peace, my friend Pete Dye. One of life's great gentlemen, and one of golf's greatest icons.— Jim Irsay (@JimIrsay) January 9, 2020
Pete Dye built over a hundred courses all over the world, and his legacy will live on in those classic green complexes and well-designed fairways. It will also live on in all of those he mentored, including Nicklaus and Norman and countless others. And as Tour pros size up the 150-yard tee shot on the 17th tee at TPC Sawgrass during the Players Championship in February, Pete will certainly be on everyone’s mind.
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