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Charlie Sifford Drive: Los Angeles County pays homage to Sifford by renaming street

August 18, 2015

The late Charlie Sifford once took up residence in Los Angeles, a refuge for African-American golfers while the PGA of America's "caucasian-only" clause was still in force. He and many of the best African-American golfers frequently played at Western Avenue (now Chester Washington) Golf Course there.

On Sunday, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors officially renamed a section of 120th Street, bordering the north side of Chester Washington GC, as Charlie Sifford Drive.

"It's important that we honor Mr. Sifford's tremendous accomplishments so that all may be inspired by his courage and perseverance," County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said at the ceremony that was attended by Sifford's son Charlie Sifford Jr.

Sifford, who was 92 when he died in February, won the Gardena Valley Open at Western Avenue three times. He finally was permitted to join the PGA Tour in 1961 and went on to win two tournaments, including the Los Angeles Open in 1969.

A World Golf Hall of Fame member, Sifford received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2014.