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RIP Tom Ramsey

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Aussie_Nick, Jun 30, 2011.

  1. Aussie_Nick

    Aussie_Nick Member

    Not sure if any of you guys ever came across Tom but he was a giant of sports journalism down here. Interesting obituary even if you haven't heard of the guy. Just thought I would share.

    Legendary Australian golf writer Tom Ramsey dies
    The Daily Telegraph-

    THE greatest story Tom Ramsey never wrote is the one about his own life.

    Golf writer, entrepreneur, wine connoisseur, pilot and medical marvel - Ramsey's life was every bit as remarkable as the many famous names with whom he crossed paths while travelling the globe.

    Marilyn Monroe, Joe DiMaggio, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Ben Hogan. Billionaires and superstars, first-class travel, five-star hotels and an open invitation to the world's most exclusive golf courses.

    The legendary Australian golf writer died on Wednesday. Cancer, his companion for more than a decade, finally took its toll. He was cremated in a private ceremony yesterday and his ashes will be spread at his favourite course, Royal County Down in Ireland, the country of his birth.

    Ramsey was News Limited's chief golf writer for four decades. He edited TV Week magazine and worked on Australasian Post and various newspapers around the country.

    News Limited chairman and chief executive John Hartigan said Ramsey was one of the absolute giants of sports journalism in Australia.

    "A stubborn northern Irishman, he covered 141 majors in his 40 years as a golf writer," said Hartigan. "He was afraid of no one and regularly dished it out to the likes of Greg Norman, despite his iconic standing in this country."

    At TV Week, Ramsey lived something of Hollywood life as he helped develop the Logies into the pre-eminent entertainment awards.

    For five years, he had a permanent room in Melbourne's then hotel-to-the-stars, the Southern Cross. As a golf writer, that trend continued as he followed the careers of Bruce Devlin, David Graham and later his great sparring partner Greg Norman.

    "I don't really think the newspapers knew how much I was spending. Because I was allowed to make my own bookings and I always turned left when I walked up the aeroplane. Never right," Ramsey told the November 2010 issue of Australian Golf Digest.

    "And they would divide by the number of newspapers my total bill for the trip. It looked pretty reasonable, I think, to every newspaper editor who it went in front of and they just signed it."

    He was known as the "James Bond" of golf writers, and was "devilish in every way" said media maestro Kathie Shearer, wife of Australian Open champion Bob.

    He only came to golf as a 27-year-old, but developed into a one-handicapper who never lost when money was on the line.

    Ramsey won the Australian Golf Writers Championship 12 times and is the only person to win the Australian, British and US golf writers titles.

    Even in recent years with his favoured playing partners - cricket and broadcasting legend Richie Benaud or famed winemaker Robert O'Callaghan of Rockford - he was a fierce competitor.

    This writer's final contact with Ramsey was on Masters Monday - a quick call to see if he watched the heroics of Adam Scott, Jason Day and Geoff Ogilvy between his twice daily chemotherapy. His wife Carmel called back to say he had, despite his health, enjoyed it thoroughly and reckoned he might even be around long enough to see an Australian earn the green jacket.

    The loss of Ramsey will be felt keenly in the US, where he counted golf superstars, billionaires and the country's leading sportswriters among his friends. Chief among those is Nicklaus, who in 2001 inducted Ramsey into the golf Hall of Fame that accompanies his Memorial Tournament on the PGA Tour.

    Ramsey was a co-founder of the Australian Golf Writers Association and the organisation presents its biggest gong, an award for excellence in journalism, in his honour.

    He is survived by his wife Carmel and son Andrew.

    Tom Ramsey May 5, 1936 to June 29, 2011
  2. gingerbread

    gingerbread Well-Known Member

    Tom was quite the character. He worked for Murdoch during a time when there were no worries when it came to expenses. Only flew first class, always stayed at the Four Seasons or similar hotels. And nobody blinked at golf writers taking free junkets to exotic islands like Vanuata. He also generously picked up the tab whenever his trips took him to the Sydney office. I spent a few very late nights with him and other journalists at a dive bar nicknamed "The Evil," mesmerized by his stories.
    He lived quite the life. Hope he writes his memoirs.
  3. Mozilla

    Mozilla Guest

    Well, um ... oh, never mind.
  4. gingerbread

    gingerbread Well-Known Member

    Ha! And the sad thing is, I went back and changed "write" to "writes."
    Anyway, here's to Tom and his memoirs.
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