Birmingham, AL (WIAT)-Every professional golfer has their own unique journey into the paid ranks. Esteban Toledo's journey started far from the golf course and took a detour down the road of Triumph.
"Did you ever live in a house that was full of dirt and cockroaches and a bunch of stuff? Well, I grew up like that and I am not afraid to talk about it because maybe some fans out there don't really know who I am and living that kind of life, very tough, very poor," said Esteban Toledo. We always had food don't get me wrong, but we didn't have money and we never had any beautiful clothes like you are wearing right now or me wearing my sponsors on my left chest or right chest but it was tough. But at the same time it was a wonderful experience that not many people had and that is fine to share it because it makes me a better person now that I appreciate what I had there not what I have now."
Esteban's professional career started inside the boxing ring but his fight against appendicitis soon turned him over to another sport that requires a different kind of swing.
"When I was little I grew up on the other side of the river on the golf course and I found a 7 iron," Toledo said. "That is how I learned how to play golf, with a 7 iron. I putt with 7 iron. I chip with a 7 iron. I hit a tee shot with a 7 iron. After all the members were gone I hid the 7 iron back in the edge of the water and swam across the river and went to my house and came back the next day and played three holes. That's how I started."
Esteban never won on the PGA tour but things quickly changed when he turned 50. They always say things get better with age! In his 9th start, Esteban rewrote the history books becoming the first Mexican to win on the Champions Tour and it came down to a three man three hole playoff in Houston on Cinco de Mayo.
"Winning there was just everything to me, my family, my fans, my country," said Toledo.
His first victory though was more than just another page in the history books. It was a promise kept.
"My brother died during Toshiba," Toledo said. "I promised him I was going to win for him before December. I knew my brother was there with me that day and it means everything to me and I told him I was going to win again I am just waiting for that week."
As Esteban Toledo continues down this road of Triumph he still looks back to where he came from and remembers all of those who gave him a lift to help him get here.
Esteban Toledo has also made it his mission to give back to his own community.
With the assistance of family, friends, fans, and supporters he was able to start The Esteban Toledo Family Foundation.
This foundation focuses on helping children by supplying basic needs such as shelter, clothing, food, education, love, and an introduction to the Lord.
For more information about The Esteban Toledo Family Foundation you can visit his website at http://www.estebantoledofamilyfoundation.org/.
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