EVERETT — Johnny Cohn has been golfing for longer than some of the Everett AquaSox players have been alive.
That’s not bad for a guy who didn’t even pick up the sport until he was 70, and Cohn is living proof it’s never too late to start a new hobby.
Cohn shot a 97 Monday morning, but that wasn’t the highlight of his sporting endeavors for the day. He joined twin brother, Jerry, at Everett Memorial Stadium on Monday to toss out ceremonial first pitches prior to the Everett AquaSox’s game with the visiting Salem-Keizer Volcanoes.
The twins turned 90 on May 29 and wanted to do something special to commemorate the occasion. Gary Cohn, the superintendent of Everett Public Schools, is Jerry’s son and set the whole thing in motion, Jerry said.
The duo warmed up in front of the AquaSox dugout, practicing their form and demonstrating their deliveries.
“This is fun,” quipped Jerry, clad in a blue sweater.
The left-handed Johnny, wearing a crimson and gray argyle sweater, went first and tossed a side-armed delivery to Everett’s own sidewinder, relief pitcher Wyatt Mills. Jerry followed from the right side and they posed with Mills for pictures following the pitches.
The twins grew up in Seattle and played for Garfield High.
“(I played) a little bit. Second team or third team,” Johnny said. “I was never very good, but (Jerry) was a better player than I was.”
Jerry went to the University of Washington while Johnny spent a year at Washington State University and a year at UW. They “caught the end of World War II” and Jerry was called up again for the Korean War, though he stayed stateside.
“He spent his time in Florida with all the girls down there,” Johnny quipped.
Johnny spent 50 years in the flower business in Seattle and still lives in the Northgate area. Jerry went into the furniture business and now lives on Camano Island.
It was in Mazatlan, Mexico, that Johnny decided he wanted to learn to golf. At age 70.
The only available clubs were Jerry’s right-handed set, so Johnny learned to golf right-handed.
“I grabbed a couple of wedges and said, ‘Johnny, this is a hand-eye game. If you can’t look at it, you can’t hit it.’ ”
Said Johnny: “Now I do keep my head down.”
You’re never too old to try something new, whether it’s golf or first pitches, and at 90 years young, the Cohn twins are still learning.
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