In Memoriam: Neil Roberts

Image courtesy of Vancouver Golf Tour/Fraser Mulholland

NOVEMBER 3, 2021

RICHMOND, BC (PGA of British Columbia) – The PGA of BC regrets to share the news that Life Professional Neil Roberts passed away earlier this week.

Roberts, who won the 1995 PGA of BC Championship and was best known as the longtime Head Professional at Pitt Meadows Golf Club, died Monday, Nov. 1 at Ridge Meadows Hospital. He was 65.

After joining the PGA of Canada in 1977, Roberts worked at three different facilities – including a stint as Head Professional at Port Coquitlam’s Carnoustie Golf Club – before joining Pitt Meadows Golf Club as an Assistant Professional in 1985. He’d remain in that role until succeeding Rick Parkinson as Head Professional at the end of a 2002 season in which he was selected for the PGA of BC’s Assistant Professional of the Year Award.

Roberts was also recognized as the Lower Mainland’s regional recipient of the Dick Munn Golf Professional of the Year Award in 2015. He stepped away from his role at the club in 2017 and was named a Life Member of the Association shortly after.

Roberts’ 1995 PGA of BC Championship victory was a memorable performance, as he shot a final-round 68 in a downpour at The Vancouver Golf Club to earn come-from-behind, three-stroke victory over Murray Poje for the title. Roberts, who finished at 9-under for the 54-hole event, and Poje were the only players to break par in the championship.

With the win, Roberts earned the opportunity to play in the PGA Tour’s 1996 Greater Vancouver Open at Northview Golf & Country Club, which he described to the Vancouver Sun at the time as “the most exciting thing that’s happened to me in my golf career.”

Roberts also guided Pitt Meadows to a team victory in the 2000 Jack McLaughlin Memorial Pro-Junior Championship, as he and junior competitors Jay Klassen, Chris Murphy and Neil McQueen captured the title by one stroke at Squamish Valley Golf Club. He was instrumental in the continued success of the long-running Golden Ears Open and in providing opportunities for up-and-coming professional golfers to develop their games.

A statement issued by Pitt Meadows Golf Club noted that the man fondly known to many as “Chainsaw” will be “dearly missed by all members and staff.”

“Neil will be remembered by Pitt Meadows Golf Club members for his quick wit and friendly presence welcoming members and golfers from the local community,” the statement read. “His positive impact was felt by all members at the golf club and many stories will be cherished. He loved Pitt Meadows Golf Club and the many strong friendships he made throughout the years he was at the club, both as a Professional and club member.”

Roberts is survived by wife Kelly and daughter Ashley. The PGA of BC extends its sympathies to Roberts’ family, friends and industry colleagues during this difficult time.

Any information regarding an obituary or the scheduling of a memorial service will be posted here once available.

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