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U.S. Open’s 18th flag is perfect tribute to Arnold Palmer

The King will be represented on the 18th hole Sunday at Erin Hills.

U.S. Open - Final Round
The new 18th hole flag for Sunday at the U.S. Open.
Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

The 117th edition of the U.S. Open is the first since the death of Arnold Palmer, the 1960 winner of the national championship. Palmer’s win at Cherry Hills in 1960 is widely regarded as one of the best major championships in the history of golf, and maybe the best U.S. Open ever.

The Cherry Hills open featured a final-round with Ben Hogan, Palmer, and Jack Nicklaus all in contention. The three legends represented different eras of the game and overlapping on the same day. Palmer erased a seven-shot deficit in one of the great charges of all time.

When Palmer finally clinched, he launched his visor into the air in what became one of the most memorable clips of his career and really, golf history. It’s shown on every single montage about Arnie and on Sunday, the silhouette of that moment is plastered all over the grounds at Erin Hills.

The most notable and coolest spot it’s found is right in the middle of the green on the massive 18th hole. There, the caddies for the final groups won’t pull a flag with the customary “18” on it, but just an homage to Arnold’s U.S. Open title.

The silhouette is also on some of the wraps around the grandstands, and everyone entering the grounds on Sunday will get a 1960 commemorative pin, which is a replica of the player’s badge that competitors got when registering for the 1960 U.S. Open.

We’ve now had nine months of Palmer tributes, from the Ryder Cup to Bay Hill to the Masters. There have been a lot of cool ways to honor the King and this 18th hole flag is definitely up there.