Joe Kirkwood Jr was born on this day in 1920. A former professional golfer on the PGA Tour and a movie star.
Kirkwood was born in Melbourne, Australia. His father Joe Kirkwood, Sr., who was a golf pro and who taught him to play golf, is acknowledged as having put Australian golf on the world map. In 1948, he and his father both made the cut at the US Open, the first father and son to do so and a record tied only in 2004. When Joe Kirkwood, Jr. defeated Sam Snead to win the 1951 Blue Ribbon Open in Milwaukee, United States, they became the third father-son winner in the history of the PGA Tour which in 2005 still has only six such winners.
In 1945, Kirkwood was invited by Monogram Pictures to test for the role of boxer Joe Palooka, a popular comic book character. He got the part and starred in Joe Palooka, Champ (1946) as well as ten more Joe Palooka films through 1951. Kirkwood returned to the role in the 1954 television series The Joe Palooka Story.
Later in the 1950s he was one of the reporters on the popular radio program Monitor on NBC Radio.
Joe Kirkwood has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1620 Vine Street.