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Kenny Perry was declared a loser in a playoff to Angel Cabrera at The Masters earlier his year, but that’s only half the story. After the tournament was over and the broadcast had concluded, his life changed. All too often the thrill of victory and agony of defeat is captured on the playing field. But Perry was in for a surprise when he left Augusta National.
“Well, I think I was a winner even though I didn't get the jacket,” Perry said. “I had Phil Mickelson call me, I had Jack Nicklaus, all the greats of the game, they called me, wrote me letters, President Bush. It was pretty neat, all the outpouring of love that I received. I had over 1,000 emails, I had over 800 cards and letters, and the letters I received were letters that -- I've never written a letter like this before but I felt compelled to write you. Here I am, I've got two kids, I had countless letters from fathers saying, ‘You showed sportsmanship, you're a class act.’ It's true, I've got my mom with cancer, she's probably not going to live much longer, my sister is fighting breast cancer. You think about it, golf is just a game, it really is. I may not have had this perspective back in my earlier years when I was younger, but I realize at this stage of my career how lucky I am and how fortunate I am. I didn't win, but I felt like I won.”