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Tommy McAuliffe
Armless Golfer

Photo of Tommy McAuliffe
Tommy McAuliffe was the 'World Champion Armless Golfer'. Tommy was born in 1893 at Buffalo, New York, the oldest of five children. His arms were amputated after being run over by a train in 1902. He was left with no arms, not even stumps. He learned to write by holding a pencil in his mouth. He was the president of his senior class, attended three years of college, married in 1919, father of four children and grandfather of 16. He became a caddy at a nearby golf course. Using an old discarded club, he learned to play by holding the club between his neck and shoulder. He became so good he won the caddies tournament. After finishing college, Tommy was encouraged by his brother Walter, a professional golfer, to start his own Vaudeville Act in New York City. His "Trick Shot' act became so popular he traveled to all 48 states, all over Canada and Australia with his show. He did golf exhibitions at major golf courses in the U.S. He knew and played golf with Bobby Jones, Gene Sarazen, Walter Hagan, Chick Evans, Tommy Armour, Jim Barnes, Geo Van Elm and Sports Writer O.B. Keller. His low score for 18 holes was 85. His average was 92. Tommy became the "World Champion Armless Golfer."

Tommy appeared on the ABC-TV program "You Asked For It." He presented motivational talks and became an inspiration to all who heard him. He and his brother Raymond Joseph McAuliffe Sr. are featured at the Langley Golf Museum in Kissimmee, Florida. The museum is located at the Kissimmee Bay Country Club. The museum's exhibits include a video of Tommy's ABC Show.

The above information was kindly provided by Tommy's great-niece Anne Marie McAuliffe-Sheckels.
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Tommy McAuliffe. Photograph above from 'The American Golfer', 1912.
Tommy McAuliffe holds the stick between his chin and shoulder to hit a ball off his brother's forehead.

Australian Newspaper Beta - "Argus" 1929

The following video from the Kissimmee Bay Country Club includes footage of Tommy on the "You Asked For It" show.
Hit counter started 28 January 2008

Tommy McAuliffe - Armless Golfer
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This page last updated 19 July 2009

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