The 2016 Ryder Cup is at Hazeltine, site of Payne Stewart’s 1991 US Open victory.
Stewart played on five Ryder Cup teams (1987, 1989, 1991, 1993 and 1999). In his career, he amassed a 8-9-2 record.
In the 1999 Ryder Cup at Brookline, Stewart became upset by the heckling of European Team member Colin Montgomerie. With the American victory assured, Stewart conceded a putt — and his own match — to Montgomerie on the 18th hole.
“The game is about sportsmanship,” Stewart said.
A few short weeks later, Payne Stewart was gone — dying along with five others when the cabin of their Learjet depressurized. The others in the aircraft were Stewart’s agents Robert Fraley and Van Ardan, pilots Michael Kling and Stephanie Bellegarrigue, and golf course architect Bruce Borland.
“He was such a leader at the Ryder Cup,” said Davis Love III. “He was so dynamic and seemed happy and content. Then he was gone.”
The United States team will without a doubt try to channel the spirit of Payne Stewart this year.