Arnold Palmer’s letter to a student that arrived last week

Nick Carlson, who entered the U.S. Amateur at Oakland Hills just inside the top 2,000 of the World Amateur ranking, made it to the semifinals of the August competition last year.

And Carlson, who plays golf for the University of Michigan, received a pretty special letter, tweeting ESPN’s Darren Rovell a picture of a missive from the late Arnold Palmer—who died September 25.

If you’re wondering why a letter dated September 8 took so long to make it to its recipient, it’s not because Palmer used the Pony Express. Rather, the letter was mailed to the club Carlson works at (likely where he’s registered for his USGA handicap).

The course, apparently, held the letter for Carlson, rather than forwarding it to him. He picked it up on a trip home.

Palmer’s letters to winners of tour events have become legend in the age of social media. This one is significant for two reasons. It may be the last Palmer message of congratulations, and perhaps more importantly, it shows that the King went out of his way to engage and encourage promising young golfers well outside of the ranks of major tours.

Classy stuff.

Arnold Palmer was not only a true gentleman but a bada$$ as well.