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If there was one person, dead or alive, who you could play a round of golf with, who would it be? I would play that round with my grandfather, Harlow. He was the epitome of timeless style and classic golf. My grandfather and his three older brothers grew up in a golfing family, “The Golfing Gers” as they were referred to in their home state of Oklahoma. The love and appreciation of golf was ingrained in them from an early age. Though my grandfather never made it on to the PGA Tour, like his oldest brother Chris, he never gave up on his passion or his unrelenting drive for the game of golf.
My grandfather passed away when I was only 12 years old. It wasn’t until a couple years later that I fell in love with golf. Now, as an adult, my passion for golf has reconnected me to my grandfather in ways I never imagined.
What comes to your mind when you think of classic golf? For me, I can’t help but hear Bing Crosby’s catchy tune Straight Down the Middle in my head. For others, Arnold Palmer in his four-button collared polo and Oxford spikes with his perfect wind swept hair may come to mind. The golfing heyday for my grandfather and his brothers was the 1950’s, a time when the game was growing steadily. Golf style transformed from drab suits and transitioned to more athletic, functional, and colorful styles, styles that still inspire me.
When I was a little boy, my grandfather cut down an old set of irons for me, bought me a bag, and took me to the driving range when he came to visit, first introducing me to golf. I remember being enamored by watching people come up to my grandfather and watching his smooth swing and complementing him on his shirt or shoes. Even as a young boy, I understood that people looked to him for his style and the way he carried himself. He taught me my first lessons of the traditions and etiquette of the game. After this strong introduction to golf, I didn’t start playing the actual game until 1997, and I couldn’t get enough of it.
As a kid I walked almost every round, but I didn’t fully appreciate the walk, the camaraderie, maybe because of how hot it was in Tucson in the summer, so even though I loved it, I didn’t yet fully understand the beauty of the game.
During my Air Force career through my two deployments to Iraq, I really learned how precious life is, that life can change in an instant, and I really became present with friends and family, and my golf game and the way to live life transformed. The love of walking a golf course and enjoying everything the walk has to offer has continued to grow since then, and I love sharing that walk now with my family and friends. Enjoying life everyday and living it to its fullest IS my passion.
Today when I play, all I want to do is walk. I want to take the course in--the sights, the smells, and all the sounds you get to experience when you walk the course are like nothing else. I love playing with my son and my friends, I love the camaraderie and the traditions of the game, and I love the timeless style my grandfather introduced me to all those years ago.
I love everything about the game of golf, from the history of pristine courses to the feats and achievements of the “greats” of the game and to the vintage style, from the camaraderie of your playing partners to living life to its fullest. At Eagles and Arrows, we embody all of these loves with our motto: LOVE GOLF LIVE LIFE. We hope that when you carry one of our bags, put on one of our gloves, wear one of our shirts or hats—on or off the course—you’ll feel the same thing I felt as a boy watching my grandfather—You will feel and be inspired by the spirit of Eagles and Arrows and know how much we appreciate sharing our philosophy of life with you.
I look forward to sharing the walk with you,