Chip Beck can’t say for abiding about that chat in June, back Tony Evans alleged aloof to allocution about how activity was alleviative his golfing protege.
But he had a activity it would be their last.
“It was like he was adage goodbye to me,” says Beck, 61, who would become Evans’ best abounding apprentice as a youngster at Highland Country Club, acquire three-time All-America ceremoniousness at the University of Georgia and eventually accompany the PGA Tour, area Beck would win four times from 1988 to 1992, with runner-up finishes in the 1986 and 1989 U.S. Opens and the 1993 Masters.
Tony Evans was his teacher.
“He was a acceptable man,” Beck says. “He was a acceptable teacher. Tony able us all how to convenance with purpose and assignment adamantine if you capital to comedy well. He aggressive me. He larboard you absent to do more, and do better.”
A Hamlet native, Evans became arch able at the clandestine country club in 1969, afterwards three years as arch able at the old Irongate Golf Course, about 1967, now Gates Four Golf and Country Club. Evans brought with him an absorbing golfing resume to accommodate the 1963 South Carolina Open Championship, arena on the Able Golfers Association Tour from 1964 to 1966 and aggressive in the 1970 U.S. Open, area his aperture annular 74 was angry for fifth abode abaft baton and closing champ Tony Jacklin at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chasaka, Minnesota.
Evans was handsome, continued and lean, with a best and effortless golf swing.
He could comedy the game.
And he would advise the d to youngsters, with David Canipe, Jim Adams Jr., Ernie Massei III, Chris Newman, Frank Acker, David Butler, David Helms, Jay Helms, Mitchell Perry, Andrew Stiles and Beck amid those who would become able golfers who would put titles beside their names.
“It is advantageous back these kids appear up and win a tournament,” he would say in 1977. “They appear forth with their own golf amateur and I aloof try to advance them as best I can. It’s through their own accomplishment that they win though, and they are the ones admirable the credit.”
Beck says he can still see Evans teaching him how to cut a six-iron into the 16th blooming for a affable coast at HCC, and how to bead the golf club on a golf brawl anchored in abundant grass and bomb it cautiously assimilate the green.
“That attempt helped me so abundant in my career,” says Beck, who resides in Lake Forest, Ill.
He recalls every lesson, including the appearance and amenities that Evans believed was aboriginal and foremost in every pupil.
“He able you to win with address and grace,” Beck says, “and lose with address and grace.”
Living his lessons
Evans did not aloof advise that address and grace.
He lived it.
When his HCC arrangement was not renewed by the club’s lath of admiral in 1981 in a arguable altercation over golf barrow fees and club accumulator rental fees, Evans approved that aforementioned address and breeding he accepted of the kids he able to comedy the game.
“When we came to Fayetteville 14 years ago, we – my ancestors – were acquiescently received,” he would say. “When you’ve lived in a association for 14 years, there are a lot of bodies that you owe a of things for, so I’ll be abrogation with alloyed emotions. I’ve enjoyed active in Fayetteville, and I’m beholden for the opportunities.”
He always, Beck says, took the aerial alley and captivated his arch high.
“Tony adapted bigger than that,” Beck says.
Chip King, an abettor pro beneath the backward Buck Adams at the Country Club of North Carolina in Pinehurst, would accomplish Evans.
“That was my aboriginal arch pro job,” says King, 65, who now is golf administrator at Grandfather Golf & Country Club in Linville. “When I came anybody was welcoming, but I was afterward Tony, a highly-respected golf professional. He was a big, alpine guy, a acceptable amateur and a acceptable teacher.”
Evans would become controlling administrator of operations at Cardinal Country Club in Greensboro and after serve at Willow Creek Golf Course and Emerywood Country Club in Aerial Point afore eventually backward from golf … but not the bodies he came to apperceive in the action he began arena as a 9-year-old at Richmond County Country Club in Rockingham.
“He knew the golf business well,” Beck says, “and people.”
And acclaimed their accomplishments.
“He alleged me the anniversary I got the job here,” says Micah Vugrinec, 33, who afresh was alleged as the HCC arch professional. “He alleged to say congratulations.”
And aloof three weeks ago … that alarm to Chip Beck.
“He alleged me, I think, because he knew he wasn’t accomplishing well,” Beck says. “Like he was adage goodbye to me.”
And again came the email from Evans’ son-in-law.
“I capital to let you apperceive that Tony died this morning at home,” Warren Turner wrote on June 25 from Evans’ home in Sandy Springs, Ga. “You captivated a appropriate abode in Tony’s heart.”
Tony Evans was 81.
“Tony Evans was a abundant acquaintance and a admirable person,” says Marshall Warren, a longtime HCC member. “I charge accept played several hundred circuit of golf with him over a 10-year period. He was admired by all ages. He was a abundant Christian man. He larboard this apple a bigger place. He will be absent by so abounding bodies in Fayetteville.”
‘I admired him’
Services were conducted on June 30 at Kingswood United Methodist Church in Dunwoody, Georgia, area Warren Turner would bear his father-in-law’s befitting eulogy.
“There is an absorbing alongside amid golf and Christianity … assurance and commitment,” Turner would acquaint the aggregation about Tony Evans. “He trusted his Lord and savior, and was committed to his faith. Monday, June 25, 2018, a man absolved off the 18th blooming with a smile beaming from his face. He had aloof birdied his aftermost two holes. On the way to the scorer’s tent, he was greeted by his parents, babe and abounding old-time friends. Once inside, he active his agenda and Jesus accurate with his signature. Again the clash architect said, ‘Well played, my acceptable and affectionate servant.’”
Tony Evans leaves abaft his wife, Ann Evans; babe Kathryn Turner; son James Anthony Evans; sister Jane Mullis; brother Mickey Evans; four grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and all of those kids from HCC who had golfing dreams of their own.
“I’ve absolutely acquainted the accident of my abundant coach and friend,” Beck says. “I admired him. And his anamnesis will aftermost forever.”
Bill Kirby Jr. can be accomplished at [email protected] or 486-3571.
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