BETHESDA, Maryland – Driving down a par-4 17 on the Congress blue track, Lexi Thompson jumped into the flat, leaving herself 102 yards to approach. She took an extra baton—her 50-degree wedge—to control the spin and relied on audience reaction to tell her the rest.
Roar said it all.
The ball returned to the hole and fell into place for the Eagle, which marked her 5-under-67 in Round 2 of the KPMG Women’s League. Although the splinter I had seen dripping down her shirt on the fifteenth of the fifteenth month, as if in slow motion, it was very difficult to forget as well.
– LPGA (LPGA) June 24, 2022
I would love today’s meme.
Thompson’s beloved grandmother, Dorothy Fishey – her biggest fan – passed away on May 23 of natural causes, a week before the US Women’s Open, at the age of 92. When Thompson talks about how her mental approach to the game has changed over the course of this year, she talks about Mimi.
“She was everything to me growing up,” Thompson said.
It was Mimi who often took Thompson and her siblings to the golf course. She was a staple of their tournaments and the babysitter often. Poached eggs on toast were Thompson’s favorite breakfast at Mimi’s house. She often sat on the floor as a child eating Oreos and milk, while Mimi sat behind her playing solitaire.
“Great memories,” Thompson said. “These are the ones I will cherish.”
Dorothy Fishey had three children and worked for the New York Yankees for decades, selling tickets to their Spring Training Games in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Son Jimmy was her caretaker in later years. Thompson described her grandmother as the life of the party, and said the neighbors loved coming over for a drink and chatting in her garage. Kids love to swim in the pool. Mimi can often be found solving a crossword puzzle.
“It was a fireworks,” Thompson said. “I loved golf like no other.”
Thompson is known for being a hardworking worker, but when Mimi’s health deteriorates, Thompson rushes home to Plantation, Florida, with her mother, Judy. Practice can wait, until it leads to the US Women’s Open.
“Being by her bedside with my mom for the past week and a half, showering and cleaning her up, it was the most painful thing,” Thompson said, with tears in her eyes.
But in the midst of the sadness emerged a sense of gratitude and a new perspective. Now in her eleventh year in the LPGA, the 27-year-old realized that being too hard on herself, especially in the majors, wasn’t worth it.
“I grew up with two older siblings, played for bigger age teams, and never really dealt with just being mediocre,” she said. “I’ve never wanted to be that, and I’ve always wanted to be better every time I get up and go on the golf course. I’ve always had a mission on my mind, and I still do.
“If it’s a bad day, it’s not the end of the world. It’s still a blessing just to be here.”
Thompson owns 11 LPGA titles, including one major title. But that major title came in 2014, and her last LPGA win was three years earlier at the ShopRite LPGA Classic.
In a 3-under championship through two rounds, Thompson cut her own to catch In Gee Chun, who fired a first-round 64.
Thompson can still hear Mimi say “Go get them!” Before the big tour.
“It feels like yesterday at CME she was watching us on her scooter,” Thompson said. “I know she’s with me.”