Living in Ann Arbor, I’m used to seeing the skies on autumn Saturdays full of airplanes carrying advertising banners. The Goodyear blimp practically has a second home here, for it’s always in the air over the University of Michigan’s stadium
But I’ve never seen aerial advertising at a golf tournament:
During Thursday’s opening round, Mediate’s attention was momentarily diverted to an airplane flying overhead, carrying a conspicuous banner.
“I look up and see the plane,” he said. “And then I see something strange. ‘Did I just see my name on that?’ It was pretty cool.”
The banner read “Guts. Passion. Fun. Thanks, Rocco.”
Callaway, Mediate’s equipment supplier, arranged the aerial tribute.
“I’ve never seen anything like that for anybody at a tournament,” he said. “I didn’t know they were doing it until they told me (Thursday) and then I saw it again (Friday). It’s crazy, but I’m so appreciative of all the support I’ve gotten since that day. The fans have been great. It’s been wild.”
Rocco’s hanging around for the weekend. He’s not winning because he’s 10 shots back and choking fumes from sheer exhaustion. But his persistent smile can break the gloom from an otherwise nondescript tournament.