Sports Outside the Beltway

Former PGA Tour winner Buddy Allin dead at 62

The five-time winner and former Vietnam vet passed away last weekend.

Buddy Allin, a former PGA Tour and Champions Tour player, died Saturday at the age of 62. The cause of death was reported as cancer.

Allin learned to play golf at age 13 while working as a caddie at the Santa Barbara Municipal Golf Course in California. After playing golf for two and a half years at Brigham Young University, where he was teammates with Johnny Miller and Mike Reasor, Allin left Provo to join the U.S. Army in 1967. He volunteered for service in Vietnam, spending 18 months there as an artillery officer.

For his efforts in Vietnam, the Army awarded Allin — who reached the ranks of Executive Officer, 1st Lieutenant — four decorations, including the Bronze Star and an Air Medal.

Allin joined the PGA Tour in 1971 and went on to win five events, including the 1971 Greater Greensboro Open, the 1973 Florida Citrus Open (now the Arnold Palmer Invitational) and the 1976 Pleasant Valley Classic. His best season was 1974, when he finished ninth on the money list after winning the Doral-Eastern Open Invitational and the Byron Nelson Golf Classic.

Upon turning 50 in late 1994, Allin played in 157 Champions Tour events, winning the 1997 American Express Invitational in Sarasota, Fla. He last played on the Champions Tour in 2000 and had been working as a teacher.

“Bud Allin’s life was one of service and commitment, whether it was serving his country in Vietnam as a U.S. Army officer and being awarded two bronze stars, one with V for valor, or being awarded winners’ trophies on the PGA Tour, Champions Tour and European Tour,” Champions Tour President Rick George said. “All of us will miss Buddy and are saddened to learn of his passing.”

Allin is survived by his wife, three children and four grandchildren.

I don’t think any other Vietnam vet won on the PGA Tour. Orville ‘Sarge’ Moody served in the army for many years but I don’t think he did a tour. Allin’s sucess on tour came before I followed the sport, but I still knew his name. RIP.

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Buddy Allin was a Great teacher, instructor and friend! He was a great Golfer because he wanted to teach the game of golf instead of play on tour. Thats a real golf Pro. I went to the San Diego Golf Academy while Buddy Allin was teaching. His last semester teaching was my last semester. The day he told our class about his illness, there was silence in the room my classmates’ faces told their feelings! There was nothing but sadness after class with hugs, tears and words of wisdom! We all looked at life differently after that class. I just want to say I love you Buddy and you have made a difference in so many young golfers lives. May you RIP Buddy Allin!

Posted by Josh Mabey | March 16, 2007 | 01:43 pm | Permalink

I had Buddy as a teacher for almost 3 semesters and I think I speak for everyone when I say he was an inspiration. His story’s made the classes interesting and hours would pass by as Buddy talked. He was a great man and a great teacher, he just had this way of bonding with us and getting across to us. He will be dearly missed by all at the San Diego Golf Academy. I was unfortunate to play with Buddy but maybe in the next life. R.I.P. Buddy, Sincerely Adam Throneberry

Posted by Adam Throneberry | March 17, 2007 | 01:49 am | Permalink

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