Legendary architect Pete Dye died on January 9, 2020, after a long illness. He was 94.
A member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, Dye, with his wife Alice, was a pioneer in golf design with courses that are still among the world’s most played and reviewed. Harbour Town Links on Hilton Head in South Carolina; Teeth of the Dog in the Dominican Republic; Whistling Straits and Blackwolf Run in Kohler, Wisconsin; the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island; and, of course, the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass stand among his legacy.
Many LPGA events have been held at Pete Dye-designed courses, including the Indy Women in Tech Championship at Brickyard Crossing near Dye’s home in Indianapolis, and the Senior LPGA Championship, which has been played at the Pete Dye Golf Course in French Lick, Indiana, for the past three years.
“The game has lost a true original,” LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan said when the news of Dye’s passing broke on Thursday. “Pete quite literally left his mark on this game. Our players and fans are the beneficiaries.”
PGA of America President Suzy Whaley said, “Pete Dye left an imprint on the world of golf that will be experienced for generations, painting wonderful pictures with the land that continue to inspire, entertain and challenge us. The PGA is saddened by the passing of this dear friend of the PGA Professional. Pete and his late wife Alice formed the greatest force in golf design history. The Dye family will forever be linked to many of the thrilling championships in PGA history and for something that they intended all along – that we embrace golf’s life values.”
Born Paul Dye Jr. in Urbana, Ohio, in 1925, Dye’s name was a colloquialism, as his initials P.D. became Petey and, later, Pete. He attended Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, where he met his wife, Alice, a member of the women’s college golf team who remained an outstanding amateur player.
As an adult, Pete Dye qualified for five U.S. Amateurs and one U.S. Open. He designed his first course, a nine-holer called El Dorado Golf Club, just outside Indianapolis in 1961.
Alice preceded Pete in death in February 2019. They are survived by their two sons, Perry and P.B.. And they will be missed by generations of golfers.