Respected American golf journalist and author Dan Jenkins has died, aged 89, in his hometown of Fort Worth, Texas.
Jenkins started his writing career at The Fort Worth Press and rose to stardom at Sports Illustrated. He wrote the best-sellers ‘Semi-Tough’, ‘Baja Oklahoma’, and ‘Dead Solid Perfect’, and was a columnist for Playboy and Golf Digest.
Jenkins played golf at Texas Christian University and was a close friend of Ben Hogan, who also hailed from Fort Worth. A member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, Jenkins started covering the sport following Hogan and fellow Fort Worth legend Byron Nelson.
“Being from Fort Worth, I would follow Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson anywhere,” Jenkins said on a 2011 conference call to announce his Hall of Fame selection. “Since they’re in there, I’m happy to be the third guy from Fort Worth so included.”
Jenkins covered his first major at the 1951 US Open, when Hogan shot 67 in the final round to win at Oakland Hills. He listed that among his top three moments in golf, along with Jack Nicklaus winning his sixth Masters at age 46, the final round of the 1960 US Open, regarded by many as being one of the greatest days in the history of the championship. Arnold Palmer shot 65 in the to beat Hogan, the aging star, and Nicklaus, the emerging star, who was still an amateur that day at Cherry Hills.
“I’d never experienced as much excitement as all of us felt that afternoon following that action,” Jenkins said. “There have been so many great moments in golf that you even forget some of them. There have been so many great tournaments that I’ve been privileged to see, and people paid me to go watch, that I’m awfully grateful for it. And I’m so happy that I chose the profession I did.”
Jenkins was a long-standing member of the Golf Writers Association of America, and joined the Association of Golf Writers in 1974.