Friends and family gathered to remember the life and legacy of Arnold Palmer in a beautiful public memorial service on Tuesday at Saint Vincent Basilica Parish in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, not far from where the King grew up. The two-hour, 19-minute event was broadcast live on Golf Channel and ESPN.
One of the most touching eulogies came from Palmer’s grandson and professional golfer, Sam Saunders. He spoke about the man he and his family affectionately knew as “Dumpy” and shared some personal anecdotes, most notably the last phone call he had with his grandfather.
Others that spoke included Arnold’s biggest rival and best friend Jack Nicklaus, CBS broadcaster Jim Nantz and PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem.
Tom Watson, Lee Trevino, Nick Faldo, Phil Mickelson, Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson and some of the most decorated players in golf paid tribute to Palmer in his hometown. They even brought the recently acquired Ryder Cup as an ode to the legend.
Rickie Fowler & Bubba Watson in tears as they deliver the Ryder Cup to Arnold Palmer’s memorial pic.twitter.com/Ud6CZkXEkQ
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) October 4, 2016
After the service concluded, the crowd exited the church and gathered outside for one final flyby of Palmer’s plane as a tribute to the former pilot.
We’re standing outside the church. Arnie’s jet just did a fly by. Fun to imagine the big grin on his face, buzzing the tower one last time.
— Kevin Van Valkenburg (@KVanValkenburg) October 4, 2016
It was a fitting end to beautiful day and a beautiful life.
Check out this rainbow over Latrobe. They’re calling it Arnie’s Rainbow. pic.twitter.com/h9vfwffLBm
— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) September 29, 2016