Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Death of Peter Thomson, five times Open champion

Peter Thomson
Peter Thomson became the first Australian to win The Open at Royal Birkdale in 1954.

The family of Australian golfing great Peter Thomson announce his passing on Wednesday 20 June 2018.
He had been suffering from Parkinson's disease for more than four years and lost his brave battle at home in Melbourne surrounded by family at 9.00 a.m. Born on 23 August 1929, he was two months short of his 89th birthday.
The first Australian to win the Open went on to secure the title five times between 1954 and 1965, a record equalled in the 20th and 21st Centuries only by American Tom Watson.
On the American senior circuit he won nine times in 1985, setting a record that may never be broken. As well as a great player he was an outstanding contributor to the game, serving as president of the Australian PGA for 32 years, designing and building courses in Australia and around the world, helping establish the Asian Tour and working behind the scenes for the Odyssey House drug rehabilitation organisation where he was chairman for five years.
 He also wrote for newspapers and magazines for more than 60 years and was patron of the Australian Golf Writers Association.
In 1979 he was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for his service to golf and in 2001 became an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for his contributions as a player and administrator and for community service.
Peter is survived by his wife Mary, son Andrew and daughters Deirdre Baker, Pan Prendergast and Fiona Stanway, their spouses, 11 grandchildren and four great grandchildren. .
They ask for privacy in their bereavement and will announce funeral arrangements in the next few days. Requests for further information can be directed to Brendan Moloney on 0412 362 000 or at imgolf@optusnet.com.au.
     
R and A  STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF PETER
THOMSON AO, CBE
Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R and A, said, “It is with great sadness that we have awoken to the news of the passing of Peter Thomson.
“Peter was a true gentleman and will be forever remembered throughout the world of golf as one of the great champions of our wonderful sport. He was a distinguished Honorary Member of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews and will be sorely missed by all of us at The R and A. Our thoughts are with his family at this very sad time.
"Peter gave me a number of very interesting and valuable thoughts on the game, how it has developed and where it is going which demonstrated his genuine interest and love of golf.
“He was one of the most decorated and celebrated Champion Golfers in the history of The Open, winning the Championship five times in total and becoming the only golfer of the 20th century to lift the Claret Jug on three consecutive occasions between 1954 and 1956.
“Our deepest condolences go out to Peter’s wife, Mary, and his four children, Diana, Peta-Ann, Fiona and Andrew.”

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