“His charisma, sense of humor and knowledge of the Bible drew people to seek him out.”
Bobby Clayton was a beloved Calvary alumnus who passed away September 16th, 2020, from cancer. He was one of the people who originally initiated the idea for a golf tournament at CU. Clayton attended the tournament each year up until the year of his passing.
Randy Clayton, Bobby’s son, described him as fiercely loyal and generous. “My father was flawed and imperfect like the rest of us, but he cared deeply about people. Many people have said the same thing about him and that was that he had the gift of “phone.” If he was thinking about you, he would often call that person out of the blue. Many times, it was an encouraging call that they needed at just the right time.”
“Dad was a Navy veteran and served during the end of the Korean war,” Randy said. “After he was discharged, we moved back to Wichita KS, and he became a golf professional and was an assistant pro at several different golf clubs in the Wichita area.
“Dad was 26 years old when Jesus found him and saved him. We attended Wichita Bible Church. He immediately had a hunger for understanding God’s word which led him and his young family to Kansas City and Calvary Bible College in 1966. He crammed four years into five, majoring in Pastoral Studies and graduated with high marks in 1971 and then took a church in Paola, Kansas.”
As Bobby became a respected Bible teacher, serving as pastor, elder and teacher in Paola, and later back in Kansas City, golf was always a significant part of his life. He became a sales representative for the Ben Hogan Golf Company, and worked for at least three country clubs repairing clubs and giving golf lessons.
“Dad was a master club fitter and repair professional and was inducted into the PGA Midwest Section ‘Hall of Fame’ in 2009,” Randy explained. “He was a craftsman. He was still working at the age of 84 at Blue Hills Country Club where had a repair shop and gave golf lessons until he passed away.
“Dad was a people guy,” Randy said. “He enjoyed and benefitted from counseling and training couples and small groups of believers in Bible doctrine and Greek language studies. He could fill the pulpit and was a good teacher but working with individuals and small groups was his gift. His charisma, sense of humor and knowledge of the Bible drew people to seek him out. He was the associate pastor at Koinonia Bible Church in Kansas City. I can tell you he was loved by the congregation. The Sunday before his passing, the church showed up and worshiped and had church in his front yard and they had an opportunity to say goodbye to him. It was the most beautiful thing I have ever experienced.”
The 2021 Calvary University Golf Tournament will be played in Bobby’s honor. It has been named The Bobby Clayton Memorial Golf Tournament.