Keith Anderson Blog

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We all want to--NEED to--believe in the “American Dream” and that it's still possible to work hard, overcome adversity and find a better life. I believe Keith Anderson's story embodies just that.

I met Keith on an absolutely perfect day near the first tee of one of the most famous courses in America: Oakland Hills Country Club. And although we were only going to shoot him playing a couple of holes, he could barely contain his desire to get out on the course. Golf is in his blood. It's what brings him peace. And it's the reason he's alive.

Keith grew up on the east side of Detroit. It was a rough existence. He needed a way out, so at the urging of his mother, Keith began carrying bags as a caddy for many of Detroit's royalty at the Country Club of Detroit. We sat down there for the interview and talked through just about every aspect of Keith's life. It was truly an emotional journey, but one that Keith was ready tell. All the while, I kept wondering where he ever found the strength to push on.

Profoundly, Keith's escape and drive for tranquility through his sweat and hard work became his means to permanent escape. It's poetic really. I was so scared something wouldn't ring true.  What a relief to find he is who he says he is. If nothing else, his authenticity is wonderful.

I spent two days traveling through Keith's life, from the front porch of his boarded-up childhood home to the golf course that became his sanctuary from a violence-filled neighborhood. I watched as Keith visited his parents' gravesite, ironically on the anniversary of his mother's death. And I witnessed his life now, complete with a great job, a loving fiancé and a 6 year old who lights up whenever Keith enters the room. It was a surreal journey to be honest, because although I got a great insight to his life, I'll never know what is was like to be Keith Anderson. But I do know, I'm a better person for having met him.

Keith told me that if he could touch just one life and help change it for the better, then it will all have been worth it. Keith, my friend, it was worth it. I hope by watching this story on Golf in America, it will once again renew your faith that the Dream is alive and well.