By Chris Lang
MIDLOTHIAN — The Virginia Golf Hall of Fame has elected two members to the Class of 2021, Moss Beecroft and David King.
Born May 18, 1930, Morris Bryan “Moss” Beecroft was a Newport News native and accomplished player who won six VSGA Senior Amateur Championships and two VSGA Senior Stroke Play titles. Beecroft died in April 2020 at the age of 89.
Beecroft, a longtime member at James River Country Club in Newport News, also found success on the national stage. He was a finalist at the 1991 U.S. Senior Amateur Championship and was the low amateur at the 1992 U.S. Senior Open.
Beecroft was a fixture on the highly regarded Society of Seniors Amateur Tour in Florida and was inducted into the Quail Ridge Hall of Fame in Boynton Beach, Fla., his home away from home. In 1999, Beecroft was inducted into the Peninsula Sports Hall of Fame. Beecroft won the Kenridge Invitational at Farmington Country Club in 1967 and was runner-up of the Eastern Amateur at Elizabeth Manor Golf & Country Club in 1970.
Beecroft was a successful businessman and the patriarch of men’s clothing store Beecroft & Bull, which he built from the ground up with his late wife, Frances, more than 60 years ago. Three Beecroft & Bull stores operate today, with locations in Virginia Beach, Richmond and Charlottesville. Years ago, Esquire magazine created a yearly list of the “Best Men’s Stores in the Country,” a list on which Beecroft & Bull is a mainstay.
King is known both for his on-course success as a player and for his philanthropic efforts that help young players continue their education in college and beyond.
During his playing career, King qualified for 17 USGA championships, including eight U.S. Amateurs, four U.S. Mid-Amateurs, three U.S. Senior Amateurs, and two U.S. Senior Opens. King found much success in VSGA events, winning the VSGA Senior Amateur Championship in 2002—a victory that helped him earn VSGA Senior Golfer of the Year honors that year—and two VSGA Senior Four-Ball titles (2000 and 2001).
Overall, King won 13 titles in VSGA, Maryland State Golf Association and Washington Metropolitan Golf Association events. In 1969, he won the prestigious Valentine Invitational and in 1974 added a title at Farmington’s Kenridge Invitational to his resume, two of the more than 100 amateur tournaments King won. He also won five Northern Virginia Golf Association senior titles.
King is a recipient of the MSGA’s Dawson Stump Lifetime Achievement Award and was recognized by Golfweek magazine with the Yancey Ford Jr. Award for contributions to the game. King created and ran more than 40 senior amateur national ranking tournaments, and about half were won by golfers from Virginia.
On the philanthropic front, King established and endowed the Dave King Scholarship, one of seven named awards distributed by the VSGA-VIP Scholarship Foundation. To date, the Dave King Scholarship has provided 19 students with financial support for college. He has also endowed the Heritage Foundation’s Traineeship for College Students; provided four $5,000 scholarships to Loudoun County college-bound high school seniors; and provided 20 scholarships to the The First Tee of Washington, D.C.
The Class of 2020 Induction Ceremony, originally scheduled for this past May, was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. If the situation with the pandemic permits, the members of the Class of 2021 will join the five-member Class of 2020 at an Induction Ceremony in the spring of 2021. The members of the Class of 2020 are Kandi Kessler Comer, Wayne Jackson, David Partridge, Richard Smith and Wynsol Spencer. More information on the Class of 2020 inductees can be found at virginiagolfhalloffame.com.
Previous Virginia Golf Hall of Fame classes, with the site of the Induction Ceremony, were:
- Class of 2019 (Farmington CC): Bobby Cruickshank, Harry Easterly, Mary-Patton Janssen, Tom McKnight and Bill Millsaps.
- Class of 2018 (Hermitage CC): Dr. Lew Blakey, Robbye Unger, Bobby Wadkins and Lew Worsham.
- Class of 2017 (CC of Virginia): Donna Andrews, Keith Decker, Wallace McDowell and J.C. Snead.
- Inaugural Class of 2016 (The Omni Homestead Resort): Vinny Giles, Chandler Harper, Clyde Luther, Sam Snead, Curtis Strange and Lanny Wadkins.
Chris Lang is the VSGA’s Manager of Media and Communications.