Two Autographs, One Day

Image courtesy of Memphis CVB
We’d like to thank Mitch Henderson for sharing this story.

This is how I remember it. It was May 2005 and the Memphis humidity had begun its flow onto the TPC at Southwind. Having heard that Bill Murray was playing in the FedEx St. Jude Classic Pro Am I decided to try my luck in getting an autograph for my 10 year old who was enamored with Bill. This was after watching “What About Bob” about 1,603,219 times.

With no ticket, no permission and little sense I went under the rope at the tee for the sixth hole, loped up to Bill without a pen or paper and asked for his autograph for my son.

He asked, “Where is your son?”

“In school.” I replied.

“A likely story. You want the autograph.”

“No. It really is for my son. He has watched ‘What About Bob’ so much I think he has worn out the DVD.”

“What’s your name?”

“Mitch… and he is a big fan of yours.”

“Well Mitch, I don’t do autographs.” I wasn’t sure if he was serious or just being Bill Murray and not wanting to linger awkwardly, I walked away towards the nearest building, somewhere between being bummed out and being elated having had a brief dialogue with Bill Murray.

While still walking, I heard Bill yell “Hey Mitch!” and turned around to catch a glimpse of him penning something on a golf ball and then he proceeded to throw it to me. Scurrying to get into a good position to catch it through the crowd, I was surprised to see some crumb snatcher do a sideways dive about five feet in front of me, catching the ball, and scurrying off. Bill saw the whole thing and my face must have shown my extreme dismay. He shrugged as if to say “Oh well, I tried.”

After relaying my story to some people, I was handed a souvenir tournament flag and a Sharpie coupled with encouragement to try again. I did. Somewhere on the fairway of the seventh hole, I caught up to him again and the growing crowd he was drawing. After what seemed like an eternity of trying not to look creepy and waiting for an opportunity to approach him, I finally stepped up.

“Too bad about the ball, Mitch.”

“Yeah. Would you sign a flag for me?”

“I thought you said it was for your son. You’re going to sell it on EBay aren’t you?”

“It is… I meant…”

Bill took the flag and Sharpie and scrawled his signature on it. While doing so he told me he was going to be watching EBay to see if I was lying to him.

I thanked him and took my prize. My son was over-the-moon with excitement to get his flag.

Autograph at My Wedding

We’d like to thank Owen Malbec for this story.

I was married on May 26, 1990 at the Garrison Golf & Country Club in Garrison, NY. Bill Murray was playing golf that day and, although we didn’t meet him, the club person that was our organizer got Bill to autograph one of our matchbooks (a lot of people still smoked in 1990!)

As it happens, John John Kennedy had played the day before and signed the guest book “John John Kennedy”. Not to be outdone, Bill therefore signed our matchbook “Bill Bill Murray” and even wrote out “10% off all marital aids”! We still have it somewhere and I often end up telling this story. Maybe he’ll send us a card for our 25th next May! 🙂

Foul Ball

We’d like to thank Chris for sharing this story.

In the late ’80s when I was very young, my parents took me to a Salt Lake Trappers game in Salt Lake City. Bill Murray was part owner of the team at the time and, on the night we attended, he happened to be at the game. During one of the breaks between innings, several of the players grabbed Bill and dragged him around the bases.

My dad happened to catch a foul ball during the game. Afterwards, he snuck onto the field and into the player’s dugout, where he asked Bill to autograph his baseball. Bill took the ball and asked my dad, “Aren’t you supposed to give these back?” My dad didn’t know how to reply until Bill smiled, signed the ball, and handed it back to him.

5th Avenue during Hurricane Gloria in 1985

We’d like to thank Thomas Pickerel for sharing this story.

There we were, in NYC on the morning of September 26th, 1985, walking up Fifth Avenue, near the Trump Tower, when my buddy said, ¨Hey, there´s Bill Murray, signing an autograph for a cop¨ and, sure enough, there he was.

My buddy and I were on the way to Europe, from Seattle, and we were visiting New York for the first time. Hurricane Gloria was about to arrive, and it was raining pretty hard as we carried our backpacks from the Port Authority, over to 5th, and up towards a friends place on the Upper East side where we were planning to stay.

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A Walk Down the Fairway

We’d like to thank Tim for today’s story.

It was the summer of 2003 at the Greater Hartford Open. I was 12 years old working as a volunteer at the tournament. As an avid golf enthusiast and naturally a fan of Caddyshack, I was very excited to see Bill play.

After being snubbed earlier in the day by Bo Jackson, my morale was low. My hopes of meeting Murray were fleeting. I waited for Bill patiently to arrive at the hole where I was stationed.

As he teed off and began to move down the fairway, I knew meeting him was the truly important task at hand. He began interacting with the crowd. I took my chance. I must have screamed “Mr. Murray” about 10 times until finally he responded “Jesus kid, what?!”

I was so shocked at the fact that I was being spoken to directly, over everyone else, that I completely lost the ability to speak. He then praised my persistence and invited me to walk the rest of the hole with him and even signed my hat. Best golf memory I will ever have.