Charlie Sifford, 'Jackie Robinson of Golf,' Dies at 92

Charlie Sifford, 'Jackie Robinson of Golf,' Dies at 92

Sifford broke down PGA's color line in 1960.

Published February 4, 2015

He was known as the "Jackie Robinson of golf" for breaking the Professional Golfer's Association Tour's color barrier in 1960.

Sadly, golfer Charlie Sifford has died, having passed away in Cleveland on Tuesday at the age of 92, according to Golf.com.

Just last year, President Obama honored Sifford with the Presidential Medal of Freedom award, commenting: "It was never just about the points. "Charlie says, 'I wasn't just trying to do it for me. I was trying to do it for the sport.'"

After learning that Sifford had been honored with the award, Tiger Woods tweeted: “You're the grandpa I never had. Your past sacrifices allow me to play golf today. I'm so happy for you Charlie."

In 1960, Sifford broke down the PGA Tour's "Caucasians Only" rule and forced the organization to include him as its first African-American member. He was 38-years-old at the time. Sifford went on to win the 1967 Greater Hartford Open and the 1969 Los Angeles Open.

Robinson himself gave Sifford the following advice, according to Golf.com: “Above all, you can’t be going after these people who call you names with a golf club. If you do that, you’ll ruin it for all of the black players to come.”

Sifford is a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, having been inducted back in 2004. 

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(Photo: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Written by BET-Staff

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