Last week, Golf Digest ran a story on LGPA golfer Sophie Gustafson and how she bonded with a young teen named Dillon who was bullied over his stuttering to the point where he attempted suicide.
Gustafson, who also speaks with a stutter, made it her mission to ensure that stories like Dillon’s got wider exposure and she managed to get the attention of Tiger Woods.
— Sophie Gustafson (@SophieGustafson) May 10, 2015
Woods sent Dillon a letter talking about his own experiences with stuttering and he encouraged Dillon to keep fighting.
The letter states:
Someone told me that you like watching me play golf. I really appreciate that, and I also want to say how proud I am of you.
I know what’s it’s like to be different and to sometimes not fit in [sic]. I also stuttered as a child and I would talk to my dog and he would sit there and listen until he fell asleep. I also took a class for two years to help me, and I finally learned to stop.
I was younger than most of the kids I competed against and often I was the only minority player in the field. But, I didn’t let that stop me, and I think it even inspired me to work harder. I know you can do that too.
You have a great family, and big fans like me on your side.
Be well and keep fighting. I’m certain you’ll be great at anything you do.
After he received the letter from Woods, Dillon sent an email to Ron Sirak, who wrote the original piece on Gustafson as well as the followup piece which included Tiger’s letter, detailing his thanks and gratitude.