June 12, 2014
In celebration of Father’s Day, the SCGA checked in with Rich and Ryan Boyker, a father/son duo and SCGA members at El Dorado Park Men’s GC.
Golf is a bond the entire Boyker family shares. Rich Boyker’s love for golf began at the age of 14, when a close friend introduced him to the game.
“I remember going out to a par-3 course that was lighted,” he says. “I was fortunate enough to sky it high and hit a light! Despite that rough start, I kept playing.”
As his passion for the game took off, there was no question that one day Rich would introduce the game to his family. He made sure all three of his children played growing up, with his first-born son Ryan starting at the age of two.
“Mom still has a picture of me using dad’s putter at Heartwell Golf Course in Long Beach when I was barely able to walk,” Ryan reminisces. “It was twice the size of me, but I wanted to use it. Probably because my was making more putts with it than I was.”
The stories that Rich and son Ryan are able to tell are vivid, funny and enjoyable. There’s the one when Ryan hit a hole-in-one on a par-4, the ones about winning Father/Son tournaments, the promise Ryan made to his dad to attend every U.S. Open in California, the round Rich played against future PGA TOUR player Mark O’Meara and the time Rich brought Ryan to Riviera CC for his 21st birthday.
But the best one of all? The one about the laughing duck.
A friend in the Boyker’s foursome was not having a good day on the course. After wrapping his club around a tree and breaking it in half, the group moved on to the next hole, one that demanded a carry over water.
“He starts talking to himself that he’s going to hit his next shot in the water,” Rich says. “Sure enough he chunks it. And there’s that duck!”
After a short pause for laughter, Ryan continues the story.
“The duck went ‘quack, quack’ and gets closer and keeps quacking,” he says. “That duck was laughing at us!”
It’s clear the bond between Rich and Ryan is special, with the two often finishing each other’s sentences while reminiscing. Both members of El Dorado Park Men’s GC, they’re currently co-champions, with Rich recently winning the Senior Men’s Club Championship and Ryan winning the 2013 Men’s Club Championship. He will defend his title later this month.
“I’m so happy to spend time on the course with my family,” says Rich, as his younger son and wife are putting in the background. “We all love it, we’re all competitive, but most of all we just enjoy spending time together.”