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Joint Base Andrews Features

NEWS | July 13, 2007

Airman tees up against the best in the world

By Ron Bickerstaff 316th Wing Public Affairs Community Relations chief

We all do it. From the moment we learn the basics of sports. We imagine the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth, game seven of the Major League Baseball World Series, down by one with a 3-2 count with Roger Clemens on the mound. The fireballer unleashes the heat ... the only thing louder than the crowd is the resounding crack of the wooden bat against the leather ball. Gone, game over, the crowd goes wild! 

We imagine the last game of the NBA Finals trailing by two, getting the ball in the corner at the three point arc and firing up a jumper over the outstretched hand of Lebron James ... swish, nothing but net. 

Yes, we all do it, but, once jobs, marriage, children and other obligations become a part of life, those memories often fade like a pair of Levi's jeans. 

One very lucky Airman from Team Andrews, however, was rewarded with a chance to return to his youth and live out a once in a lifetime opportunity. Tech. Sgt. Andy Amor, 316th Civil Engineer Squadron Structural Maintenance Repair Team NCOIC, was chosen to play with the greatest golfer on the planet: Tiger Woods! 

Sergeant Amor represented Andrews at the Inaugural Earl Woods Memorial Pro-Am Tournament, part of the AT&T National PGA Tour at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md. 

Some history: Sergeant Amor was born and raised in Tacoma, Wash., part of a third generation Air Force family; one of four brothers to serve (he is number seven of 10 children -- six boys and four girls). He first picked up a club in 1985, but it wasn't until 1989 when he said, "I got real serious." So serious, he worked his handicap to an impressive two. 

He won this year's Andrews Active Duty tournament, which happened to coincide with the AT&T National PGA staff searching for servicemembers to play in the Pro-Am tournament. 

The Earl Woods Memorial Pro-Am, named after Tiger Woods' father, a lieutenant colonel Green Beret with Special Forces in Vietnam -- would pair servicemembers with the best golfers in the world. 

"It's very important to me that this tournament honor the men and women who serve in our Armed Forces," Mr. Woods said. "They put their lives on the line so that we are able to enjoy our freedom, and we'd love for them to come out and enjoy a few days of relaxation." 

No one knows whether it was a full moon or just the luck of the draw, but Amor got the call he would be teeing off with Mr. Woods. 

"I really didn't think about it until everybody kept telling me about it," Sergeant Amor said.
"Everybody" included family members who flew out from Kansas City, Mo., to be a part of his posse. "It was really special having my family here especially my sister," said Sergeant Amor. "The short notice made airline tickets costly, but it was a once in a lifetime experience." 

The first hole was an experience Sergeant Amor will never forget. 

Mr. Woods stepped up to the par four, 402-yard first hole and drove it far and down the middle. Sergeant Amor would tee off from the blue tee (about 50 yards closer). His name was announced and he waved to the crowd as he placed his ball on the tee. 

"It's amazing how quiet it got. I'm used to playing at Andrews where planes are flying and there are other noises," chuckled Sergeant Amor. "I could feel my knees shaking." 

Nerves didn't unhinge the Airman as he hit it far and down the fairway. "I couldn't believe it. I out hit Tiger!" 

From that point, everything else was just a dream for Sergeant Amor. With his son, Drew, carrying his bag, he walked along with Tiger Woods and talked about what golfers talk about. 

"Tiger shared with me some stories about his father. I went to high school in Kansas City, and he told me how his father played for the Kansas City Monarchs in the old Negro Leagues. Awesome," said Sergeant Amor. 

When asked what he will remember about this Independence Day, Sergeant Amor, didn't mention meeting Tiger Woods and former President George H.W. Bush. He didn't mention the post game press blitz. This humble Airman was just proud to represent the Air Force. 

"I am so blessed and proud to be an Airman. Being here representing all the Airmen here and in harm's way is overwhelming and my family and I are grateful," he said.