Cathy Whitworth made a mark on golf that no one has equaled, whether it was Sam Snead or Tiger Woods, Mickey Wright or Annika Sorenstam. His 88 wins are the most by any golfer on the professional tour.
Whitworth, whose LPGA victories spanned nearly 25 years and became the first woman to win $1 million on Tour, died on Christmas Eve, her partner confirmed. He was 83 years old.
Betty Odle did not give a cause of death, saying that Whitworth died suddenly while celebrating with friends and family.
“Kathy left the way she lived – to love, laugh and make memories,” Odle said in a statement released by the LPGA Tour.
Whitworth won the first of her 88 titles in July 1962 at the Kelly Girls Open. She won six majors in her career, surpassing Mickey Wright’s record of 82 wins in the summer of 1982 aboard Lady Michelob.
His last victory came in 1985 at the United Virginia Bank Classic.
“Winning is never boring,” he said at one point.
The women’s US Open, the top major in women’s golf, was missing from her career. After becoming the first woman to win more than a million dollars in 1981, she said: “To win the Open to be the first woman to win a million must have changed, but it’s a consolation that took the pain of not winning a little.” “.
Whitworth was named the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year in 1965 and 1967, when she easily overtook Wimbledon singles champion Billie Jean King. Whitworth was inducted into the Golf Hall of Fame in 1982.
She was LPGA Player of the Year seven times in an eight-year span (1966 to 1973). He took home the Vare Trophy for lowest scoring average seven times and led in earnings in eight seasons.
Born in Monahans, a small town in West Texas, she learned to play golf in New Mexico. He started at age 15 on a nine-hole course for El Paso Natural Gas employees in Jalisco, New Mexico.
Shortly thereafter she became a two-time winner of the New Mexico State Amateur. After attending Odessa College in Texas, she turned professional at age 19 and joined the LPGA Tour in 1958.