Wayne Lamson plays a lot of golf. The retired general manager at the Steamship Authority is on the links year-round, playing a majority of his rounds at his home course of Quashnet Valley in Mashpee.
On his 70th birthday on Sunday, December 13, he gave himself the best present he could have gotten, one that you can’t find on any store’s shelf, or pick up with a click online. After decades of swinging the clubs, Lamson finally scored his first-ever hole-in-one.
Wayne’s wife, Kathy, told him to go “get a hole-in-one” as he was walking out the door. He took her advice late in his round with his playing partners and friends Andy Marks and Gerry Quesnel, both of Mashpee. Setting up at the 15th tee, a 137-yard slightly uphill hole that was playing around 135 yards, Lamson grabbed his seven wood out of the bag and hit a perfect shot that was headed right for the green.
Off the club, the birthday man thought he’d gotten too much of it, though.
“I thought it rolled off. I was looking off the back of the green, thinking it was back there,” he said.
Having had many close calls and disappointments in the past in his pursuit of the evasive ace, Lamson kept looking around, but his playing partners told him that they thought it went in. Marks looked into the cup, and, sure enough, the ball was lying flat up against the pin at the bottom of the hole.
“Andy looked in the hole, and I wanted to believe it, but I thought it must’ve gone off the green. It was pretty great,” he said.
Reaching down to take his prize from its home, Lamson broke into a huge grin. He’d finally gotten one; after all these years, he could scratch that one off of the bucket list.
“I thought, ‘at last!’” he said with a laugh. “I’ve been trying to do this for so long, and it was great to finally accomplish it. It’s been a life goal.”
It’s been a goal that he’s put a lot of time into. Wayne Lamson is not just a weekend hacker. He loves the game of golf with a passion. He said that he figures that he’s played at least 90 rounds this year, and will continue to play straight through the winter as long as the course is clear. With snow likely inbound in the next few weeks, the chances will be fewer and further between, but when the ball will roll true, Wayne plans on being out there to chase it around the course.
Wayne said that he had come very close earlier this year to getting his first over on the Vineyard, playing with his kids. Both he and his son Tommy flirted with aces on the same hole on consecutive swings. Wayne’s shot had rolled about “3 to 4 inches” short of the cup, and Tommy’s had rolled about the same distance past it.
“That’s a great memory,” he said. “It would have been nice to get one there, but we’ve got the story.”
The rest of the day on the course went by quickly, and then the celebration moved to the Lamson homestead in Falmouth where it was time for birthday cake and presents. The entire family got a great laugh when he opened the card from his mother-in-law, Helen Stahl, who also lives in Falmouth.
She had a clear vision for Wayne’s birthday and her message inside the card certainly came through.
“May your day be as exciting as a hole-in-one,” she had written inside the card.
It definitely was.