One week, two legends

Sports world loses superstars: one old, one young


Troy Walker

Julian Bartlebaugh reads about the life of the great Arnold Palmer

On Sunday, September 25, 2016, the world of sports was greatly impacted by the deaths of two major icons.  Jose Fernandez, Miami Marlins Pitching ace, and legend golfer Arnold Palmer, 87, tragically died on Sunday.

Arnold Palmer was arguably the best, most iconic golfer ever.  Arnold was born on September 10, 1929 in Latrobe Pennsylvania.  “Arnie” won 62 PGA tours and 10 Championship tours.  Of those victories he won an amazing FOUR Masters, one U.S. open, and two British Opens.

He was the PGA tour money leader in, 1958, 1960, 1962, and 1963.  He was the PGA Tour money leader (AKA the lowest scoring average) in: 1958, 1960, 1962, and 1963. He was the PGA Tour Player of the Year in, 1960, and 1962.He was a Member of the U.S. Ryder Cup team in, 1961, 1963, 1965, 1967, 1971, and 1973.  And he was a Captain of the U.S. Ryder Cup team, 1963, and 1975.

He was known as “The King”, and it is obvious why.  One of his most famous quotes was, “I never quit trying. I never felt that I didn’t have a chance to win.”  Which showed how confident he was that no one would stop him from winning.  And of course he was inducted into the Golfing Hall of Fame in 1974.

Sunday Morning the news spread about the tragic death of Miami Marlins star pitcher Jose Fernandez. 24 year old Jose Fernandez was enjoying a night of boating with 2 friends and the next morning at around 3:15 a.m. the vessel was found turned over on a rocky jetty at the entrance of The Miami Harbor.  The bodies of Jose and 2 other men in their twenty’s, were found shortly after the boat was found.

Jose was born in Santa Clara, Cuba, and it only fir that he played in Miami because there is a huge population of Cubans.  The Cuban people not only in Miami but around the United States rallied around Fernandez because he just had that feel good story of a young kid making it in the U.S. from Cuba, and becoming so successful.  For the Cubans it was one of the most tragic losses, but even for everyone else it was a very tragic loss.

His teammates knew him as someone who played the sport with passion, and integrity, and he was just having fun.  Earlier in the week his girlfriend had notified him about her pregnancy and his life was going in the right direction.  When he pitched people saw him as a little league baseball player just having fun, but dominating while doing it.  Fernandez wore the number 16 and the entire Marlins team wore 2 days after his death.

Sunday, September 25, 2016, two great sports icons were lost.  One legend, and one legend in the making.