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Bob Lewis, 76, played role on 6 Walker Cup teams

Ohioan, who played PGA Tour in early 1970s before returning home to run family’s steel business and compete as amateur, dies

Died: Bob Lewis Jr., whose extraordinary amateur career included six Walker Cup matches as a player or captain, on March 23, according to the USGA. He was 76 and had been undergoing treatment for lung cancer, according to media reports. Lewis, an Ohio native and lifelong resident, played the PGA Tour from 1971 to 1974, with little success. He returned to Warren, Ohio, to run the family steel business, Welded Tubes, founded by his father and had his amateur status reinstated. He played on four consecutive victorious U.S. teams in the biennial Walker Cup, in 1981, 1983, 1985 and 1987. After captaining the 2003 American team that lost to Great Britain and Ireland, Lewis avenged the defeat two years later as the U.S. regained the most coveted prize in amateur team golf. He finished runner-up in three USGA national championships: 1980 U.S. Amateur, to Hal Sutton, and the 1981 and 1984 U.S. Mid-Amateurs, to Jim Holtgrieve and Michael Podolak, respectively. In 1984, Lewis was the stroke-play medalist at the U.S. Amateur and the U.S. Mid-Amateur. In six Masters appearances, he made three cuts, with a personal-best T-40 in his Augusta National debut, in 1981. In 1987, while sitting in Butler Cabin and awaiting the presentation as low amateur for his 54th-place finish, Lewis watched Larry Mize chip in for birdie on the 11th hole to defeat Greg Norman in a playoff. Lewis also competed in three U.S. Opens. Last month, he was named the USGA's 2021 Bob Jones Award recipient.

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