US President Donald Trump awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Tiger Woods at the White House. He described Woods as a "true legend. Tiger Woods was fresh off his epic comeback victory in the Masters.
Presenting the golfing legend with the nation's highest civilian honor, Trump praised Woods' "relentless will to win, win, win."
"These qualities embody the American spirit of pushing boundaries, defying limits and always striving for greatness," the president said.
Woods was presented the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the White House on Monday. He became the fourth and youngest golfer to receive the prestigious award.
Trump announced last month that he would honor the star golfer with the medal, a day after Woods won a fifth Masters title, ending an 11-year major title drought having overcome personal and professional setbacks, including a highly-public divorce and multiple surgeries.
An emotional Woods thanked those in attendance at the Rose Garden ceremony for their support through the years when he was not winning.
"You've seen the good and the bad, the highs and the lows, and I would not be in this position without all of your help," he said after Trump placed the medal around his neck.
"The amazing Masters experience I just had a few weeks ago certainly is part of the highlight of what I've accomplished in my life on the golf course."
Trump, an avid golfer, described the 15-times major champion as "a global symbol of American excellence, devotion and drive".
Woods joined Arnold Palmer, Charlie Sifford; and Jack Nicklaus as the only golfers to have received the award.
Nicklaus, whose record 18 major wins Woods is chasing, congratulated his compatriot.
"Heartfelt congrats to Tiger Woods on receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom this evening! His impact on golf and his ability to inspire others to play this great game is on par with his incredible talent!" Nicklaus wrote on Twitter.
The Presidential Medal of Freedom is awarded annually to people who have made outstanding contributions to the security or national interests of the country, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.
Trump has so far awarded several athletes, including former professional NFL players Roger Staubach and Alan Page. This also includes baseball great "Babe" Ruth.
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