Herbert Norman Magnusson, age 84, longtime Coupeville resident and golf pro, passed away at Careage of Whidbey on Friday, Dec. 22, 2017.
Herb was born in Hoquiam on Dec. 16, 1933, to Axel and Lilly (Olsen) Magnusson. He graduated from Lincoln High School in Seattle and served in the US Army at the conclusion of the Korean War.
When Herb was 12 years old he lived in close proximity to the Jackson Park Golf Course in Seattle. He began hanging out at the club house where the pro, Bob Tindall, allowed him to caddy and perform other small jobs. Bob gave him a set of used clubs and taught him how to play. From that time on, except for two years in the army during the Korean War, Herb devoted the next 70 years of his life to the sport of golf, as a player, teacher and club pro.
When he was 16, Herb played in the National Junior Golf Championship Tournament. Two years later he was a member of a four-man team representing Seattle in the US Amateur Public Links Championship. In 1960, while serving as an assistant pro at Jackson Park, he became a member of the PGA. The following year he qualified for and played in the PGA Championship Tournament.
After stints as the club pro in Ellensburg and Puetz Golf in North Seattle, he was hired as the club professional at the Gallery Golf Course in Oak Harbor in 1972, serving in that position until he retired in 1992. Shortly after his retirement he was contacted by the Useless Bay Golf and Country Club to see if he would be willing to provide free lessons to the ladies of the club on a weekly basis. He accepted, and provided free lessons every week until May 2016. In appreciation for Herb’s service, a covered driving range was built, called “Herb Magnusson Learning Center.”
A celebration of life will take place at a later date. Herb will be interred at Mountain View Cemetery in Tacoma. Family and friends are encouraged to share memories and condolences at whidbeymemorial.com