Sam Parks Jr.

Sam Parks Jr. (1 US Open, 1 Ryder Cup)

1909 - 1997

Samuel McLaughlin Parks Jr. (June 23, 1909 – April 7, 1997) was an American professional golfer, the winner of the U.S. Open in 1935, his only major title.

Born in Bellevue, Pennsylvania, near Pittsburgh, Parks used his knowledge of the nearby Oakmont Country Club to win in June 1935 at age 25. Although a comparatively recent convert from college and amateur ranks and little-known nationally, Parks, the professional at the nearby South Hills Country Club, was the only player to negotiate Oakmont's furrowed bunkers and shaved greens in less than 300. After winning the U.S. Open, Parks played for the U.S. Ryder Cup team, matched against Alf Perry (the reigning British Open champion), the first time the U.S. Open champion would play the British Open Champion of the same year in the Ryder Cup Match. During that event, at the 36th hole, Parks made a 30-foot (9 m) birdie putt to win the hole and tie the match, so that both he the British champ remained undefeated in Ryder Cup play.

Parks, a University of Pittsburgh alumnus who helped found the school's golf team in the 1920s,[1] died in 1997 at age 87 in Clearwater, Florida.