Tiger Woods won the Masters over the weekend. But, the real news is that hug he shared with his ten-year-old son, Charlie. It was an endearing and relatable moment, but what made it so significant was the fact that it also completed a family circle. Back in 1997, Tiger had the exact same hug with his father.
When Tiger Woods first picked up a golf club at the age of five, it was because his father handed it to him. Earl Woods was his son’s only coach for much of his childhood, and he was a constant presence as Tiger became the most dominant golfer in the world. Earl was there when Tiger sank the putt that won him the 1997 Masters—his first major championship. Tiger walked across the green and give him a hug that instantly became one of golf’s iconic images. It was the start of a historic run followed by years of tabloid scandal, addiction, knee and back injuries, multiple surgeries and frustrated attempts at comebacks.
It felt like Tiger would never win another major, but twenty-two years two days and after that first green jacket, Woods found himself on the same spot in the same situation on Sunday. Wearing his trademark red shirt, black pants, and black hat—the same outfit he’d worn in 1997—he tapped in for the win.
Sadly, when Tiger won on Sunday, he couldn’t give his dad a hug. Earl died in 2006 when his son’s career was near its apex. That was two years before Tiger won the U.S. Open in 2008, his last major championship until Sunday’s win at Augusta.
But, his own son Charlie was there. The ten-year-old — who wasn’t yet born when his dad last won a major championship — ran up and embraced him in a hug just as meaningful as the one Tiger shared with his dad years ago.
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"Never thought we could see anything that would rival the hug with his father in 1997, but we just did… That hug with his children, if that doesn't bring a tear to your eye, if you're a parent… you're not human." Jim Nantz said exactly what we were all thinking… Immediately after winning the Masters, his first major in over a decade, Tiger Woods heads straight for his kids and family to celebrate with them, because that's what being a dad is all about 🙌💪🏆 ⠀ From pgatour (Twitter) 👈 ⠀ #tiger #tigerwoods #masters #themasters #augustanational #kids #family #familygoals #biggerthansports #dadlife #thatswhatitsallabout #fathersongoals #famgoals
It was an emotional moment, and plenty of people on Twitter shared their reactions.
aw man okay this got me — when his son comes up and he’s dressed the same as tiger — that’s great https://t.co/S2qbFGxSOy
— Shea Serrano (@SheaSerrano) April 14, 2019
Pump Tiger hugging his son in match red directly into my veins.
— Jen Lada (@JenLada) April 14, 2019
Imagine how Tiger must feel winning this in front of his son. It’s his first major since before his son was born… and now this will always be a weekend they’ll remember forever. ❤️❤️❤️
— Jamie Hersch (@JamieHersch) April 14, 2019
For others, Tiger’s win provided a moment to reflect on their own lives.
I watched Tiger Woods win his first Masters as an 11 year old boy… I remember asking my dad, “Why is he crying?”
Today I watched Tiger win his 5th Masters as a 33 year old man. My 3 year old son just asked me, “Why are you crying?”#TheMasters
— Rich Ohrnberger (@ohrnberger) April 14, 2019
— Dean Molberg (@960boomer) April 15, 2019
Tiger’s comeback is one of the great moments in sports history, but it’s also a moment in father-son history, too.