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“Back then it was a lot of dough.”
Cherry’s golf journey, which took him around the world and resulted in teaching the game to some of the most famous people in the world, all began in Kenosha at the tiny Washington Park Municipal Golf Course, better known as Muni.
‘Such a beautiful place’
Cherry says he grew up at 1022 55th St., which is now the police station.
“There is now a holding cell where my bedroom was,” said Cherry.
Growing up in concrete, Cherry remembered Muni as a different world, even though she was pretty much down the street.
“I played golf and when I got home I said to my mom, ‘When I grow up, I want to be a pro,’” he said. “And she said, ‘Why?’ I said, ‘I’ve never seen such a beautiful place in my life.’ I said, ‘God, there were just so many trees and grass and creeks running through them.’
“I said, ‘This is what I want to do.’ And I was 11 years old. “
Cherry attended St. James in elementary school, where one of his classmates was Dan Chubrilo, who later mentored Nick Van Exel as the head coach of the St. Joseph boys basketball team. Cherry, who said he bought a set of Wilson Staffs as his first new golf club in 1956, attended Bradford (then Kenosha High School), where he was a senior medalist in the Big 8 Conference in 1960.