David Feherty, former professional golfer and Golf Channel host, announced on Twitter Tuesday that his oldest son, Shey, has died of an overdose on Saturday.
“My first born son is gone from me, dying from an overdose on his 29th birthday,” he wrote. “Bless his sweet heart, I will fight on.”
“His beautiful blue eyes could captivate a room, but they could not stare down the enemy that lurked in the shadows and prevent it from reaching out to grab him in his darkest time,” his obituary read. “Shey, fought hard to win his battles with drug addiction and mental illness, but in the end the monsters won.”
The family asked that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Center for Addiction and Recovery Studies so others can be helped.
NBC Sports Group, which owns Golf Channel, released this statement:
“Our deepest condolences go out to David Feherty and his family on the passing of his oldest son, Shey. Family means everything to David, and his Golf Channel, NBC Sports and extended television family send their love and support at this difficult time.”
My first born son is gone from me, dying from an overdose on his 29th birthday. Bless his sweet heart, I will fight on.
— David Feherty (@Fehertwit) August 1, 2017
The 58-year-old has opened up about his own battle with addiction before, telling the Belfast Telegraph in 2015 that a “typical day was 30-40 Vicodin and two-and-a-half bottles of whiskey…real whiskey.”
Feherty also revealed that he went on a two-day bender after winning the Scottish Open in 1986 and became addicted to painkillers early in his career.
The athlete said he has not touched alcohol since 2005 but takes a daily cocktail of drugs due to his struggles with depression.
Feherty said he owed a lot of his recovery to his wife, Anita.
He said, “I was just a penniless, homeless, alcoholic drug addict and she looked at me and said: ‘Well, I can fix that.’ ”
The host had two sons, Shey and Rory, with his first wife Caroline, a South African beauty queen whom he divorced in 1995.