Tom and Hilary Watson
Champions are people who we
associate with great achievements.
Some champions take home trophies
for their greatness, while others
leave us with things that help us
achieve greatness ourselves – gifts
like inspiration and hope. We are
especially blessed to find those who are
champions in both ways, such as Tom
and Hilary Watson.
Tom Watson is one well-known
athlete, champion on the golf course.
Hilary Watson is another athlete, one
who champions a cause for others even
as she battles for her own life. Together
they waste no time or words. They have
given Careity the ultimate contribution,
lending their names to promote and
encourage both patients and donors.
Tom Watson is one of golf’s iconic
figures. He has achieved eight major
championships—including five British
Open victories, two wins at the Masters,
and arguably the most dramatic U.S.
Open victory in history. That’s on top
of 39 PGA Tour wins, 14 additional
wins worldwide, and 14 wins on the
Champions Tour, including six majors.
At the age of 59, he came within
inches of winning a sixth British
Open—a victory that would have made
him the oldest man by 11 years to win a
major title. He was the PGA Tour Player
of the Year six times; the leading money
winner five times; Vardon Trophy
winner for lowest scoring average on
tour three times; two-time winner of
the season-long Schwab Cup race on
the Champions Tour, and the only man
in history to shoot at least one round
of 67 or better in all four majors in four
decades. He also made at least one cut
on tour—even after cutting back to a
very limited schedule in 1999—for 37
straight years (1971-2007).
Hilary is quite the athlete in her
own right. She grew up in Rhodesia,
now called Zimbabwe, where she
represented her country in track.
Horses have always been her passion.
She showed jumping horses and played
PoloCrosse, a sport that combines the
disparate sports of polo and lacrosse.
She was exposed to Quarter Horses
when her daughter became involved
in high school rodeo. She is now
passionately involved in the Cutting
Horse world. She is actively showing
Cutting Horses even as she battles
“Hilary has been a cutter, and that’s
the reason I got involved,” Tom said.
“I used to go watch her and I got tired
of watching. I finally said, ‘I want to do
it. And to do it right, you have to have
somebody to teach you.’
“Hilary’s going through
chemotherapy these days, and it’s
obviously difficult,” he said. “You think
cancer, you think end of life thoughts.
She’s just going to carry on with her
life and let the doctors take care of her.
I know one thing, she’s a lot stronger
than I am.”
“Chemotherapy really kicks her butt.
It is not a good thing, but the plan is
that it’s going to do its work on the
cancer and she’s going to get well.
Hilary has support from the trainers,
from her friends, and from fellow
competitors. They see her as someone
to look up to. She always has the right
thing to say and she’s a doer who gets
The greatest gift in the world is hope.
At Careity, we love nothing more than
having enough hope on hand when
frantic people come to us, suddenly
faced with the word cancer in their lives.
Tom and Hilary are champions in the
most important way possible, inspiring
the hope that people need to achieve
victory over cancer. n