Tom Lehman played on the 1999 Ryder Cup with Payne Stewart just weeks before Stewart died in a surreal plane crash on his way to the Tour Championship. On Tuesday Lehman was given the award named in honor of his fallen friend on the eve of this year’s Tour Championship.
Lehman, whose 30-year professional career includes victories on the PGA, Champions and Nationwide tours, was named the 2010 recipient of the Payne Stewart Award which is given annually “to the player sharing Stewart’s respect for the traditions of the game, his commitment to uphold the game’s heritage of charitable support and his professional and meticulous presentation of himself and the sport through his dress and conduct.”
“To be selected from among so many remarkable human beings only makes me want to be a better person,” Lehman said. “We are all the result of the influence and love of many, many people in our lives. I am deeply appreciative of all of those in my own life. I desire to be a worthy recipient of this award, and I hope to always uphold the legacy of our friend, Payne Stewart.”
Lehman did not qualify for this year’s Tour Championship but has plenty to keep him busy this week in Atlanta. He will attend a Ryder Cup meeting on Wednesday night as one of Corey Pavin’s assistant captains before joining the rest of the team for the trip to Wales for this year’s matches.