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Herman Keiser

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Herman Keiser
Personal information
Full nameHerman W. Keiser
Born(1914-10-07)October 7, 1914
Springfield, Missouri
DiedDecember 24, 2003(2003-12-24) (aged 89)
Akron, Ohio
Nationality United States
Former tour(s)PGA Tour
Professional wins8
Number of wins by tour
PGA Tour5
Best results in major championships
(wins: 1)
Masters TournamentWon: 1946
PGA ChampionshipT17: 1940, 1957
U.S. OpenT14: 1948
The Open ChampionshipDNP

Herman W. Keiser (October 7, 1914 – December 24, 2003) was an American professional golfer on the PGA Tour, best known for winning the Masters Tournament in 1946, his only major title.

Keiser was born and raised in Springfield, Missouri. Like most professional golfers of his generation, he earned a living primarily as a club professional. His first job was as the assistant golf professional at Portage Country Club in Akron, Ohio. He eventually became head professional at Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio.[1] Keiser's serious demeanor earned him the nickname, The Missouri Mortician, among his fellow golfers.[2]

In 1942, Keiser interrupted his career to join the U.S. Navy for three years during World War II.[3] He served as a storekeeper aboard USS Cincinnati. Keiser was discharged in 1945 and returned to play on the PGA Tour. Despite the long layoff, he earned second-place finishes to Sam Snead at the Greater Greensboro Open, to Buck White at the Memphis Invitational, and twice to leading money winner Ben Hogan, at the Dallas Invitational and the Phoenix Open. However, he achieved golfing immortality at the 1946 Masters Tournament when he took the lead on the third hole and never looked back, defeating Hogan by one stroke to earn $2,500 in first prize money. Keiser described his Masters win as "the greatest thing that ever happened to me." [1] He won two more PGA Tour events that season.

In 1947, Keiser was part of the American team that won the Ryder Cup.[1] While the United States defeated Britain 11-1, Keiser's loss to Sam King (4 and 3) prevented the Americans from a clean sweep.[3]

Keiser retired in the 1950s, having won five tournaments during his PGA career. His only top ten in a major was his victory at Augusta in 1946. He returned to live in Ohio, where he purchased a driving range. He died in Akron in 2003 from complications of Alzheimer's disease at the age of 89.[1]

Professional wins

PGA Tour wins (5)

Major championship is shown in bold.

Other wins

this list is probably incomplete

Major championships

Wins (1)

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin Runner-up
1946 Masters Tournament 5 shot lead −6 (69-68-71-74=282) 1 stroke United States Ben Hogan

Results timeline

Tournament 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 1946 1947 1948 1949
Masters Tournament T23 NT NT NT 1 T24 T10 T11
U.S. Open DQ T26 NT NT NT NT T38 T14 CUT
PGA Championship R32 R64 NT R64 R64 R64 R64
Tournament 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 1956 1957 1958 1959
Masters Tournament T14 T39 T56 CUT CUT CUT
U.S. Open CUT
PGA Championship R64 R64 R32
Tournament 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
Masters Tournament CUT CUT WD 45 CUT WD CUT CUT CUT WD
U.S. Open
PGA Championship CUT
Tournament 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979
Masters Tournament CUT WD CUT CUT
U.S. Open
PGA Championship
Tournament 1980 1981 1982
Masters Tournament WD
U.S. Open
PGA Championship

Note: Keiser never played in The Open Championship.

  Top 10
  Did not play

NT = no tournament
WD = withdrew
DQ = disqualified
CUT = missed the half-way cut
R64, R32, R16, QF, SF = round in which player lost in PGA Championship match play
"T" indicates a tie for a place


Tournament Wins 2nd 3rd Top-5 Top-10 Top-25 Events Cuts made
Masters Tournament 1 0 0 0 2 6 26 9
U.S. Open 0 0 0 0 0 1 6 3
The Open Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
PGA Championship 0 0 0 0 0 2 9 9
Totals 1 0 0 0 2 9 41 21
  • Most consecutive cuts made – 14 (1940 PGA – 1949 PGA)
  • Longest streak of top-10s – 1 (twice)

See also


  1. ^ a b c d Blunt, Roy (February 26, 2004). "Golf legend Herman Keiser is remembered". Joplin Independent. Retrieved May 5, 2010.
  2. ^ Goldstein, Richard (December 29, 2003). "Herman Keiser, 89, Golfer Who Staged a Major Upset". The New York Times. Retrieved May 5, 2010.
  3. ^ a b "Herman Keiser, 89; Beat Ben Hogan to Win 1946 Masters". Los Angeles Times. December 26, 2003. Retrieved May 5, 2010.
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