June 11, 2000 |
It promises to be one of the best U.S. Opens ever, yet one of the saddest. As the best golfers in the world converge next week on Pebble Beach, Calif., for the 100th playing of the nation's ultimate golf championship, the joyous images of Payne Stewart's victory a year ago at Pinehurst and the sad reminders of his untimely death will hang in the air just as sure and thick as the morning mist over Monterey Peninsula. That's the sad part - that Stewart, the world-class champion and born-again Christian killed last October in a plane crash - is unable to defend his title, unable to bask in the glory of his accomplishment, unable to live out a life full of golf, family, friends and faith.
May 7, 1990 |
Payne Stewart fought off an early challenge from Greg Norman and a late one from Lanny Wadkins to shoot a 3-under-par 67 yesterday and win the $1 million Byron Nelson Golf Classic by 2 shots. Stewart, the PGA champion, finished with an 8-under 202 in the tournament, which was shortened to three days and 54 holes by rain and floods early in the week at the TPC-Las Colinas course. Stewart's victory was his second in three starts and the seventh of his career. The $180,000 first prize lifted his career earnings to more than $4.1 million, making him the seventh player to surpass the $4 million mark.
June 12, 2014 |
PINEHURST, N.C. - This Open is haunted. Perhaps 9 years ago, the last time Pinehurst No. 2 hosted the U.S. Open, it was too soon for any manifestation to have set in. There was plenty written and spoken in 2005 about Payne Stewart's death in a plane crash in 1999, but the atmosphere was not so . . . sad. Perhaps Stewart's soul was still adrift in some limbo, measuring its options before making its play. Certainly, the sense of loss and mortality did not descend on this Southern resort the way it has this week.
June 12, 2014 |
PINEHURST, N.C. - They were two players who would go on to become major champions and best buddies. But back in the early 1980s, Paul Azinger didn't know what to think when he met Payne Stewart. "I had a hard time liking him at first," Azinger said Tuesday. Stewart's brashness would subside over time. He matured into a gracious competitor and a fine family man who became an admired figure after he won the 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort and Country Club, a victory that happened a little more than four months before he died in a plane crash.
June 15, 2000 |
They gathered at dawn, on one of golf's grandest cathedrals, to pay tribute to a man's life, to what he gave and all he left behind. There were family, friends, peers, fans. . .and the media, which rarely gets up that early unless it involves a tee time or a 50 percent sale at the merchandise tent. But yesterday they arose as one, several thousand strong, to bid one final farewell. Eight months after Payne Stewart and five others perished in a chartered plane crash and 24 hours before the start of the 100th U.S. Open, they came to celebrate the reigning champion, not mourn his absence.
June 21, 1993 |
A chip falls in, a putt stays out, a U.S. Open winner is determined. Lee MacLeod Janzen, winner of the 1992 Northern Telecom Open, winner of the 1993 Phoenix Open, has now won a championship that matters. Yesterday afternoon at the Baltusrol Golf Club, young Janzen, who is 28, had a lead of one lone stroke over his playing partner, Payne Stewart, as they went to the 16th hole, a 216-yard par-3 with a two-tiered green protected by bunkers and grassy knolls. There were no golfers behind them, and the golfers in front of them needed minor miracles to get in genuine contention.
March 1, 1998 |
The list of players invited to the by-invitation-only Masters tournament, the year's first major golf championship, usually occasions great scrutiny. Has the Augusta National Golf Club included all the worthies? Did it leave out anyone important? Unless you're a big fan of garish plus fours or rainbow-colored hats, the selection committee appeared to get it right for the 1998 tournament, which begins April 9 in Augusta, Ga. One player left out is Payne Stewart. With one exception, Stewart, who wears loose sports knickers in the colors of NFL teams, is the player with the highest finish on the 1997 money list who didn't get in. Stewart finished 40th, one notch below Kirk Triplett.
October 26, 1999 |
A Learjet carrying golfer Payne Stewart and at least four others streaked uncontrolled for 1,400 miles across the country yesterday, its occupants apparently unconscious or dead, before it plunged nose-first into a field near this South Dakota town. No one on the ground was hurt, and there were no survivors aboard the aircraft, which came down about 1:20 p.m. Philadelphia time in a marshy area about two miles southwest of here. The cause of the uncontrolled flight that ended when the Learjet 35 apparently ran out of fuel was not known.
June 14, 1996 |
Woody Austin took the long and winding road just to get to his first round in the U.S. Open. He worked as a bank teller. He rehabilitated his knee for 18 months after a serious injury, an injury he first suffered as a child. He played golf all over the world, from Japan to the Dakotas. He then made the Nike tour and earned his PGA tour card for the first time last year, at the relatively advanced age of 31. Yesterday, Austin turned his first Open round into a coming-out party, firing a near-faultless 3-under-par 67 to tie Payne Stewart for the 18-hole lead on the squishy South course at Oakland Hills Country Club.
June 15, 1996 |
Payne Stewart didn't want to do it. He didn't want to yank his approach shots at 16 and 18 into the weeds at Oakland Hills Country Club and battle for bogeys to finish his second round of the U.S. Open yesterday. But look at the friends he made. On a sparkling, immaculate day for playing golf, Stewart managed to hang on despite his slip down the stretch for a 1-stroke lead at the halfway point of the 96th Open, carding a 1-over-par 71 for a 36-hole score of 2-under 138. However, two bogeys on the final three holes made Stewart a popular guy in the clubhouse, not only among the contenders who would love to leave this Detroit suburb with the silver championship trophy, but also among the folks who were dying to play two more rounds over this brutally tough layout.