Tribute to Ron Yarbrough

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Submitted by Ben Hallowell


Tribute to a longtime Coronado friend and great guy

I first met Ron Yarbrough in 1965 when he was an aspiring apprentice at the Coronado Golf Course under John Ruedi, who also became a very close friend. To say Ronnie Yarbrough and I grew up and matured together while pursuing our diverse careers is indeed an understatement. We both loved golf and as bachelors shared the good life back then – dice cups to roll for drinks at Dino’s or Mexican Village after golf, a souped-up Mercury for road trips, we created memories one after another.

The one thing I noticed about Ron almost immediately was his great heart – by that I mean he would do anything to help a friend or someone in trouble and Ron would do it quietly and without fanfare. This quality served him well as he deservedly progressed as a PGA golf pro to become head professional at Coronado until his retirement last week. He deserves to be “outed” for some of his unsung kindness to others – one shining example is hiring and mentoring the younger Doug Clarke, a truly quixotic and gifted Walker Cup golfer and Stanford graduate, who could not shake his demons and ended up in federal prison. Ron took Doug on as a staff member and did everything to help him when no one gave him a chance – unfortunately no fairy tale ending (RIP Doug), but Ron tried his best – only a few of us knew of Ron’s many other kindnesses to those out of luck.

Ron, you are a great guy and served Coronado well as a true PGA golf professional in every sense of the word. I hope this small tribute surprises and embarrasses you ‘cause I love you man!

     Ben Hallowell

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Originally from upstate New York, Dani Schwartz has lived in Coronado since 1996. She and her husband Harry are thrilled to call Coronado home and raise their two children here. In her free time enjoys reading, hitting the gym and walking her dog around the “island”. Have news to share? Send tips, story ideas or letters to the editor to: manager@coronadotimes.com