A dream come true: Kid caddies for the pro-am

A dream come true: Kid caddies for the pro-am
Phil Mickelson's First Tee of Greater Wilmington caddy. (Source: Amy Holcomb)
Phil Mickelson's First Tee of Greater Wilmington caddy. (Source: Amy Holcomb)

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - It's safe to say the Wells Fargo Championship was a dream come true for a handful of kids from the Wilmington area.

Kids from the First Tee of Greater Wilmington spent the day Wednesday caddying for the tour professionals on two of the course's par-three holes.

A post on social media showed the excitement the kids and families had meeting the players.

"Grace just caddied a hole with Phil Mickelson & Bones at the Wells Fargo PGA Championship Pro Am!!!" Amy Holcomb posted on Instagram. Can you imagine being the caddy for pro Phil Mickelson?

"We didn't know who we were going to caddie for, so I was really hoping I would get someone like Phil, and I ended up getting Phil," Grace said afterward.

After Mickelson hit his tee shot on the par-3 fifth hole, Grace picked up the pro's bag and began walking with the golfer and his caddie Bones Mackay. It drew a big round of applause from the large gallery following Mickelson's group in Wednesday's pro-am.

"At first, no one could pick up the bag because it was too heavy," Grace said. "But I went up and picked it up, and it wasn't too heavy. So, I walked it down to the green and everyone was cheering because they thought it was cool that I could carry it."

From the tee to the green, Grace says she and Mickelson talked about her game, and his game, too.

"First he asked me if I was a good golfer, and I said 'Yeah, I guess,'" Grace said. "I told him I got my best score at UNC Findley (course) which was a 77. He was like 'Wow, that's really good.' Then he talked about how him and his caddie Bones always compete on who's better. Bones always says he's really good, but when they play, he's not."

Mickelson took pictures with Grace, and her parents Amy and Mark. He also signed one of his golf gloves for her.

"It's a once in a lifetime opportunity, so I'll never forget it," Grace said. "It was really fun."

Avid 9-year-old golfer Maddux Cook chose to caddy for Zach Johnson. Johnson is a player that Cook has looked up to in the golf world for quite some time.

"I'm a big fan of Zach Johnson because he's just an all-around good golf player," Cook said.

From one golfer to another, Johnson even gave Cook a little piece of advice.

"I learned that whenever you just see a divot in the green and it's not even yours, you should go fix it," Maddux said.

Maddux hopes to win at least one major during his golf career.

Twelve-year-old Wade Rothmyer was a caddy for Vaughn Taylor. He said this experience was "better than the field trip I was supposed to go on."

Thirteen-year-olds John Bloh and Tristin Spainhour both described the experience as a "once in a lifetime opportunity."

All of the young golfers who got to caddy for pro-am players today agreed that this is a special memory they will cherish for a lifetime.

The First Tee of Greater Wilmington has been designated the tournament's primary charity for 2017.

The organization unveiled new facilities at the Wilmington Municipal Golf Course Tuesday and a $100,000 donation from Wells Fargo to grow the program.

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