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Grayson Murray Dies At Age 30 a Day after Withdrawing from Colonial, PGA Tour Says

KNOXVILLE – Two-time PGA Tour winner Grayson Murray died Saturday morning at age 30, one day after he withdrew from the Charles Schwab Cup Challenge at Colonial.

There were no immediate details on the circumstances of his death, only shock and grief from the PGA Tour and his management team.

“I am at a loss for words,” PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan said. “The PGA Tour is a family, and when you lose a member of your family, you are never the same. We mourn Grayson and pray for comfort for his loved ones.”

His management company, GSE Worldwide, confirmed the death and said it was heartbroken.

“We will hold off on commenting until we learn further details, but our heart aches for his family, his friends and all who loved him during this very difficult time,” GSE said in a statement.

Monahan said he spoke with Murray’s parents to offer condolences, and they asked that the tournament in Fort Worth, Texas, continue.

He said grief counselors would be on site at the PGA Tour and Korn Ferry Tour event in Knoxville, Tennessee. Monahan headed to Texas and later appeared on CBS as the third round was ending.

“To see the devastation on the faces of every player coming in is really difficult to see and really just profound,” Monahan said. “Grayson was a remarkable player, but he was a very courageous man. I’ve always loved that about him.”

Grayson Murray hits off the 18th tee during the first round of the PGA Zurich Classic golf tournament at TPC Louisiana in Avondale, La., Thursday, April 20, 2023. Two-time PGA Tour winner Grayson Murray died Saturday morning, May 25, 2024 at age 30, one day after he withdrew from the Charles Schwab Cup Challenge at Colonial. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

Murray, who had dealt with alcohol and mental health issues in the past, made a massive turnaround this year and won the Sony Open, hitting wedge to 3 feet for birdie on the final hole to get into a playoff and winning it with a 40-foot putt.

He also won the Barbasol Championship in 2017.

“It was a huge shock. My heart sank,” said Webb Simpson, who learned of Murray’s death shortly before teeing off at Colonial. He said Murray was the first winner of his junior tournament and they shared the same swing coach as juniors.

“I just hate it so much,” Simpson said. “I’m going to miss him. I’m thankful he was in the place with his faith before this morning happened.”

Murray was No. 58 in the world rankings coming off a tie for 43rd in the PGA Championship last week at Valhalla. He also made the cut in his Masters debut, finishing 51st, and was in the field for the U.S. Open next month at Pinehurst No. 2.

Murray, who grew up in North Carolina, was among the most talented juniors in the country. He won the prestigious Junior World Championship in San Diego three straight years and earned the Arnold Palmer Scholarship at Wake Forest.

He wound up going to three colleges, lastly at Arizona State, and won as a 22-year-old PGA Tour rookie at the Barbasol Championship.

Murray said in January that he had been sober for eight months, was engaged to be married, had become a Christian and felt his best golf was ahead of him. He was appointed to the 16-member Player Advisory Council.

“My story is not finished. I think it’s just beginning,” Murray said in Hawaii. “I hope I can inspire a lot of people going forward that have their own issues.”

Murray said he used to drink during tournament weeks as a rookie because he knew he had talent and felt he was invincible. He also brought attention to himself through social media, openly criticizing other players and getting into one social media spat with Kevin Na over Na’s reputation as a slow player.

But he felt like he turned the corner when he sought help — letting others fight for him, is how he explained it this year.

“It took me a long time to get to this point,” Murray said in January. “That was seven years ago, over seven years ago. I’m a different man now. I would not be in this position right now today if I didn’t put that drink down eight months ago.”

Peter Malnati played with Murray at Colonial. He offered to go on the CBS telecast Saturday afternoon and immediately broke down trying to talk about him.

“It’s a huge loss for all of us on the PGA Tour,” Malnati said. “As much as we want to beat each other, we’re one big family, and we lost one today. It’s terrible.”

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