Feb. 7, 2012
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The University of Alabama men's golf program lost one of its former captains on Friday when Lee Harper, 64, passed away. Harper was a four-year letterman for the Crimson Tide (1968-71) and a captain in 1971.
"Our thoughts and our prayers go out to Lee's wife Caroli and their family during this difficult time," Alabama men's golf coach Jay Seawell said. "Lee was one of the guys that helped make our golf program what it is today and a great ambassador to the game from the state of Alabama."
Harper was an accomplished junior who won two Alabama State High School Championships (1964 & 1965) before moving on to Alabama. At the Capstone, he exceled for the Crimson Tide from 1968-1971. Harper led UA to its first NCAA Championship appearance in 1971 and finished tied for 25th individually with a 2-under-par total.
After college he became an assistant PGA professional at Pine Tree Country Club before moving on to Bessemer Municipal Golf Course in 1972 as the head golf professional. He remained at the Bessemer Golf Course for 41 years in the position. He continued to have extensive success as a player, qualifying for the 1978 U.S. Open and the 1982 PGA Championship. He was the Dixie Section PGA Professional Player of the Year in 1979-81, 1983 and 1985. He was also the Alabama Chapter Section PGA Senior Player of the Year in 2001 and 2002.
A graveside service will be held at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 7, at Cedar Hill Cemetery.