On this Day in Rochester History

August 15, 1959

Democrat and Chronicle   by Sal Maiorana    August 15, 2013

It certainly wasn’t breaking news when Jean Trainor won the Women’s Rochester District Golf Association Championship on the afternoon of Aug. 15, 1959.

After all, this was Trainor’s 13th consecutive championship, and 16th overall in a career that ultimately produced 24 district titles, a record that will never be broken.

However, this championship certainly was unique, and a little less satisfying, since the competitor Trainor beat in the match play final was her 17-year-old daughter, Anne, by a score of 5-and-4, at Monroe Golf Club.

In the late 1960s, the Trainors were voted America’s No. 1 golf family, and it wasn’t a stretch. Jean was the most dominant female player in Rochester, Anne would go on to win six WRDGA championships between 1973 and 1994, and Dr. George Trainor, Jean’s husband and Anne’s father, won the 1940 RDGA championship and was one of the finest male players in the area.

Interestingly, Anne’s interest in golf bubbled only a few years before this all-Trainor final, and she even admitted to her parents, “I get tired of all this golf talk.” But her attitude changed when she met Sam Urzetta, the young head pro at the Country Club of Rochester where the Trainors were members. Urzetta had won the 1950 men’s U.S. Amateur, and Mrs. Trainor said, “He was famous with a lot of golfing ability. He made the difference to Anne, and she started taking lessons. She was 13 then, and when she played her first game it took her 8 1/2 hours and she took 152 shots. That was better than my first game of 187 at the same age.”

Anne followed in her mother’s footsteps, all the way to this championship match, but on this day, she couldn’t keep pace. Jean was 6-up after nine holes, and as George watched, his primary concern was that the match didn’t end too early because he wasn’t sure how Anne would react. Anne rallied to win the 10th and 12th holes, but Jean birdied the 14th to close it out.

“I want my daughter to be champion someday, but only if she’s ready and deserving,” Jean said.

Jean’s streak of championships ended in 1960, and she did not win in 1961, either, but starting in 1962 she reeled off eight in a row, the last of her 24 titles coming in 1969, 33 years after her first. Anne won her first in 1973, and went on to compile a superb amateur career of her own.