What Tiger Woods said during his Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony at the White House

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What Tiger Woods said during his Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony at the White House

PGA Tour

What Tiger Woods said during his Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony at the White House

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Tiger Woods received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Donald Trump in a Rose Garden ceremony at the White House on Monday.

Woods was the 33rd sports-related figure and first active athlete to win the medal. He will go for his 82nd PGA Tour victory and 16th major championship starting a week from Thursday in the PGA Championship at Bethpage Black in Farmingdale, N.Y. Woods is the fourth golfer to be honored with Medal of Freedom, joining Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Charlie Sifford.

During the 17-minute ceremony Trump delivered a lengthy introduction highlighting many moments during Woods’ career.

Woods then spoke after the president. Here is a transcript of his remarks.

Remarks by Tiger Woods

Thank you, Mr. President, Mrs. Trump. Thank you all. Thank you.

I just want to say this has been an unbelievable experience. And to have the support that I’ve had for all these years — and everyone here has seen and been with me for — some of you for my entire life, and some of you for more than half my life. You’ve seen the good and the bad, the highs and the lows. And I would not be in this position without all of your help.

In ’97, yes, I won the Masters. And I was there to — I ended up hugging my dad and my mom. My dad is no longer here, but my mom is here. I love you, Mom. Thank you.

And Sam and Charlie, for all your love and support. I love you guys so much. Erica, thank you.

I mean, everyone has meant — you guys have meant so much to me in my life. And I’ve battled — I’ve tried to — I’ve tried to hang in there and I’ve tried to come back and play — play the great game of golf again. I’ve been lucky enough to have had the opportunity to do it again. And I’ve found a game that has allowed me to do this.

And the amazing Masters experience that I just had a few weeks ago certainly is probably the highlight of what I’ve — what I’ve accomplished so far in my life on the golf course. To have had that type of experience and to be able to come out on top and win. Joey, thank you. All the great reads, too.

I just want to say thank you, again. This is an honor. I know that I’m the fourth golfer to have received this award: the late Arnold Palmer, the great Jack Nicklaus, and Charlie Sifford, who is — I always called him “Grandpa,” because he was like the grandpa I never had. And I ended up becoming so close with him that I ended up naming my son, Charlie, after him. And so to have been chosen as the next golfer after Charlie is truly remarkable. So, thank you, again. And thank you, Mr. President.

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The official proclamation accompanying the Medal of Freedom reads as follows:

Tiger Woods Proclamation

Eldrick “Tiger” Woods is one of the greatest golfers of all time. He is second all-time in both professional victories with 81, and major championships with 15 — including five Masters, three U.S. Opens, three Open Championships, and four PGA Championships.

With a record-setting performance in 1997, he became the youngest person and first African American to win the Masters. And in 2019, he became the tournament’s second-oldest champion.

Off the course, Tiger established the TGR Foundation, which has empowered students to classroom and career success for more than 20 years.

The United States is now proud to honor Tiger Woods, whose tenacity, willpower, and unyielding drive inspire us all.

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