Steph Curry congratulates Masters honorary starter Lee Elder
Honorary starters Gary Player, Lee Elder and Jack Nicklaus pose with Augusta National Golf Club chairman Fred Ridley during the first round of The Masters. Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

Lee Elder, the first Black man ever to play in the Masters, joined Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player as honorary starters Thursday morning at Augusta National Golf Club.

Golden State Warriors superstar and avid golfer Stephen Curry posted a video message on social media to pay tribute to the trailblazing 86-year-old.

Elder made his Augusta National debut at the Masters in 1975, earning an invitation with a victory in the 1974 Monsanto Open.

While he failed to make the cut in his first Masters, Elder went on to compete in the major five more times and finished as high as 17th on the leaderboard.

Elder’s appearance Thursday morning at the iconic Augusta, Ga., course was a poignant, stirring and emotional moment.

“The opportunity to earn an invitation to the Masters and stand at that first tee was my dream, and to have it come true in 1975 remains one of the greatest highlights of my career and life,” Elder said last November when it was announced he would be an honorary starter at the 2021 Masters, via PGA.com. “So to be invited back to the first tee one more time to join Jack and Gary for next year’s Masters means the world to me."

This article first appeared on Sportress of Blogitude and was syndicated with permission.

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