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TheStreet Open House

SCGA Inducts John Cook, Roger Kelly And Paul Runyan Into Hall Of Fame

Inducting Cook into the Hall of Fame was Virginia Country Club CEO and PGA Professional Jamie Mulligan, who in addition to Cook, boasts a list of students that include John Merrick, Paul Goydos and Patrick Cantlay. Mulligan shared how impressed he's been with Cook's ability to balance an impressive golf career while remaining actively involved with his family life.

"John has had an unbelievable career, but has done it in such a classy way," said Mulligan. "He is a family man, and that really does overshadow his tremendous career. It's the pleasure of my life to induct him into the SCGA Hall of Fame."

Joining Cook in the 2013 class was Kelly, one of the most powerful forces in the history of Southern California amateur golf and a longtime member of Lakeside GC. From 1936 to 1938, Kelly won the Los Angeles City Amateur, the SCGA Amateur Championship and claimed two California Amateur Championships. He also shot a 142 at the 1937 U.S. Amateur, breaking a record previously held by the great Bobby Jones. He passed away in 2004.

"You can rattle off his career accomplishments, but they tell you little about the man," said former USGA President and current SCGA Youth on Course President Jim Vernon during Kelly's induction speech. "He was such a respectable and honorable person, but one who also had an astonishing drive to win."

In 1947, Kelly played in the Crosby Pro-Am in Monterey and was paired with the legendary Sam Snead. Known to enjoy a drink in those days, Kelly had tied one on the night before and stumbled to the first tee, barefoot, trying to put his socks and shoes on. When Snead saw this, he requested that the Tournament Chairman assign him another partner.

"Just get up and hit the ball," Kelly told Snead.

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