PGA Tour golfer Michael Kim was born in Korea and moved to the United States with his parents when he was young. Kim, who grew up in the San Diego area, has been playing professionally on the PGA Tour. Kim, 25, won his first career PGA Tour victory on July 15, 2018, at the John Deere Classic in Illinois. Kim celebrated his birthday on Saturday and then stormed away from the field on Sunday. With the victory, Kim took home a $1.044 million paycheck and earn a spot in the 2018 British Open.
“Coming into the day I told myself, `It’s your birthday. Try and have as stress-free a day as possible.’ I’m very satisfied with the score I shot,” Kim told PGATour.com.
Kim’s parents and brother traveled to Illinois to surprise Michael after his life-changing victory at the John Deere Classic. On the 18th green, Kim noticed his family was there ahead of his final putt and broke out in a huge smile. After sinking that last putt, Kim embraced his family in celebration.
“I didn’t even know they were here until saw them on the camera they were there, I teared up a little on the green,” Kim told CBS Sports after the win.
Here’s what you need to know about Michael Kim’s family:
1. Michael Kim Was Born in Seoul & Moved to California With His Family When He Was 7
Michael Sangwon Kim was born in Seoul, South Korea, and came to the United States with his family when he was 7, according to Golf Digest. His parents are Sun and Yun Kim, according to the UC Berkeley website.
Kim has a brother, Richard, who is five years older than him.
The family settled in the San Diego area, in Del Mar.
2. His Father, Sun Kim, Introduced Him & His Older Brother to Golf at a Young Age After They Moved to California
Michael Kim began playing golf as a kid in California after his father, an electronics salesman, introduced him and his older brother to the game. His brother was 12 when they moved to the San Diego area, according to Titleist.com.
Kim told the San Diego Union-Tribune, “I always loved sports, I’m one of those guys who could watch Sports Center, 24/7. I tried basketball and football, but golf seemed to be best for me. I felt golf was one game I could get better at.”
He said his brother, Richard, tried out for the golf team at Torrey Pines High School and didn’t make it, deciding instead to focus on academics. Michael Kim stuck with the sport and became a standout.
3. Kim Had His Parents Support as He Played Golf at Torrey Pines High School & Then at UC Berkeley
Kim has had the support of his family and parents during his rise to the PGA Tour. Kim played high school golf at Torrey Pines High School.
After high school, Kim played for the Bears at UC-Berkeley.
Kim’s home golf course is the Torrey Pines Golf Club in La Jolla, where he has played in the Farmers Insurance Open. “It’s one of the tournaments that I’ve been dreaming about winning since I was a kid, watching guys like Tiger (Woods) and Phil (Mickelson) win out here,” he told the San Diego Union-Tribune in 2016.
According to the Union-Tribune, he “played Torrey some 100 times, thanks largely to one of great golf bargains in the United States. As a boy, he had a $10.50 monthly pass to each Torrey course. He played about 12-15 weekday afternoons per month, or less than $1 per nine-hole round.”
He told the Union-Tribune he saw familiar faces during the 2016, tournament, “I’m seeing some old faces I haven’t seen in years, it seems like. I forgot some of their names, but it’s really nice to see and I’m looking forward to hopefully more support (Sunday).”
4. He Enjoys Taking Trips Back to Korea to Visit His Homeland
Kim has spent time returning to his roots in South Korea to visit his relatives and his homeland. In 2014, he told the San Diego Union-Tribune he had taken a vacation there during a break from golf.
“It was some good family time in Korea, something we’d planned to do for a while,” Kim said. They took the trip just after he announced he was going pro after his junior year at Cal. “I planned on not even touching a club there, but after getting the sponsor’s exemption to play in the Farmers, I thought the smart thing to do would be to hit balls over there.”
5. Kim Now Lives in Texas & Is Not Married
Michael Kim now lives Texas. He has lived in both the Houston and Dallas areas, according to his social media profiles.
Kim is not married and he is listed on the PGA Tour website as being single.
Kim turned pro in 2013, according to SFGate.com. “I’ve been waiting for this for a while now, and I’m excited to take the next step,” Kim told the newspaper after making his decision to go pro. “I just felt like it was time to move on. I feel like I’ve accomplished everything I can in college, other than a national championship.”
He has earned $2.283 million as a professional, according to the PGA Tour website.