VEN AFTER 38 YEARS
of marriage, Don Donatoni
does something his wife
Diane doesn’t know.
He prays. In the backyard. Before any golf event
“I know there is somebody up there who
is watching out for all of us. He’s been good
to me. He’s kept me healthy,” Don, 71, of
Malvern, Pa., said. “Praying makes me feel
good. But it’s not just about me. When one
of my boys is competing in a major event, I’ll
ask the Lord above to look out for them as
His prayers continue to be answered.
For the seventh consecutive year, Donatoni
is the Super-Senior Player of the Year. The
White Manor Country Club member com-
piled 650 points – 126.7 clear of Saucon
Valley Country Club’s Robin McCool – to
retain his distinction.
“It’s an incredible achievement when you
think about it. The seventh means as much
to me as the first,” Donatoni, who holds 34
club championship titles at White Manor ( 19
men’s, 15 senior), said. “How I’ve been able
to maintain that streak over the last seven
years is something I’ve reflected on. I realized
that the thing that has helped me to stay
competitive is I do work on my game. You
want to maintain that competitive, elite level.
That only comes through dedication, hard
work and luck. You got to be lucky too because at our age, our injuries seem to come
more quickly than when we were younger.
Donatoni is no exception. In March, he
incurred an inguinal hernia, which required
surgery. That meant two weeks of rest and
recovery, zero golf. Days prior to the Pennsylvania Golf Association’s George Dressler
Memorial Championship, Donatoni gingerly
exerted 3-wood and driver swings on the
range, testing a body still healing.
“I felt like I could give [competing in the
Dressler] a shot. I entered with low expectations. I just wanted to play and compete,”
All of a sudden, things started to click.”
Two days after the Dressler, Donatoni
carded a 3-under-par 67 to capture the Francis
B. Warner Cup (Gross) at Burlington Country
Club. A complete turnaround from a year ago;
Donatoni needed to win the final points event
– the Tournament of Champions – to ensure
Super-Senior POY honors stayed in his stead.