“When Tiger became the first black man ever to win the Masters [in 1997] he cried like a little boy in the arms of his father, who was there against doctor’s orders after almost dying in heart surgery.”
Tiger Woods’ father Earl died last year at age 74. Eugene Robinson wrote in the Washington Post:
“Earl Woods did much more than raise a supremely talented golfer. In an age when it’s rare to read a sentence with the words ‘African American’ and ‘father’ that doesn’t also include ‘absent’ or some other pejorative, Earl and Tiger Woods were the world’s most visible, and inspiring, counterexample. ‘He was the person I looked up to more than anyone,’ Tiger Woods said following his father’s death, and even the world’s biggest cynic had to know he meant every word.
“To me, the two defining aspects of Tiger Woods’s career have been his supernatural ability to make a golf ball do impossible things and his relationship with his father. Two moments stand out: The Sunday afternoon in 1997 when Tiger became the first black man ever to win the Masters and cried like a little boy in the arms of his father, who was there against doctor’s orders after almost dying in heart surgery. And the Sunday afternoon in 2005 when Tiger won his fourth Masters and cried again, because Earl Woods, for the first time, had been too sick to come to the course and root him on.”