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As an ‘orphan’ Tony Bermingham was ‘adopted’ by golf and became a ‘favorite son.’
Born in London, England on April 30, 1937 to parents he never knew, his adoptive mother, Margaret Leonard, moved them to Ogden, Utah when he was 12. By pure fate they chose a home near the Ogden Golf and Country Club, and the caddie shack became his home away from home. He was ‘adopted’ by the members of the club, and everywhere he went thereafter golf became his family and now the orphan boy is surrounded everywhere he goes by ‘family.’
No one person in Utah has a more intimate knowledge and acquaintance of every tidbit about golf in Utah for the past 50 years. He has traveled the entire state and held a variety of jobs in golf. His knowledge, and amazing recollection of golf events, even obscure trivia, has been invaluable to the Utah Golf Hall of Fame Committee, a committee on which he has played a key role since its inception.
While many golfers can recall their own shots for years afterwards, Tony puts an unusual twist to it. He remembers others’ shots from 50 years ago to the present. But that’s Tony. He’s always had an admiration for others and their achievements and has always promoted and supported others in a kind and selfless manner.
Why do others attach themselves to Tony so comfortably? Probably because of his good nature, his uncanny, natural wit, his generous happiness. He is the life of the party, the bearer of good news and happy jokes. His timely wit has quickly resolved many tense moments between friends. His presence in a conversation is like a fine wine.
His interest in golf began as a caddie at Ogden G&CC. He rose to caddie master and eventually became an assistant professional. For supplemental income he also worked at Paramount Dairy and in the shoe department at B & B Clothier.
He helped Ernie Schneiter, Jr. open the Ben Lomond golf course and also worked for Ernie Schneiter, Sr. during the opening of Schneiter’s Riverside.
In 1964 be became the assistant professional to Dean Candland at Logan G&CC. His first head professional job was at Skyway Golf Club in Tremonton. The next year he became the head professional at the Copper Club in Magna where he worked for four years.
In 1970 he shifted directions and became a manufacturer’s rep for many golf product lines, selling to pro shops throughout Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, Nevada, and New Mexico. In 1983 be gave up most of his lines to represent Foot-Joy shoes full time.
He helped the Utah PGA Section for ten years as coordinator of pro-ams and opens, organizing and managing the events. He also served as President of the Copper Club for one year and President of the Utah Golf Sales Association for nine years, during which time he introduced a Merchandise Show and the Utah Book of Golf.
In 1980 he began volunteering for the Utah Golf Association where he was involved in course rating and helped with tournaments. He was elected to the UGA board in 1993 and served in various positions on the board until 2002. During this time he also operated the café at West Ridge Golf Course and met many more friends.
In 1956 he married Arlette Boiteux, who was born in Lausanne, Switzerland. She has been his partner and supporter for all these years and helped sustain the family by managing their family wedding reception business.
They have five children, Michael Bermingham, Christine Walker, Stacy Conologue, Sean Bermingham, and Tiffany Christensen. They have 13 grandchildren and two great grand children.
During all those years, aided by his travels and his wide variety of experiences within the golf industry, he has earned thousands of friends who have a special feeling of love for him.