Tiger: 'He was my best friend and greatest role model. I will miss him deeply'

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Earl Woods, who was more determined to raise a good son than a great golfer and became the role model, architect and driving force behind Tiger Woods' phenomenal career, died yesterday at his home in California. He was 74.

"My dad was my best friend and greatest role model, and I will miss him deeply," Tiger Woods said. "I'm overwhelmed when I think of all of the great things he accomplished. He was an amazing dad, coach, mentor, soldier, husband and friend. I wouldn't be where I am today without him."

Earl Woods was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1998 and was treated with radiation, but the cancer returned in 2004. Last month, he was too frail to travel to the Masters for the first time. His son finished joint third. The last tournament Earl Woods was able to attend was the Target World Challenge in December 2004, which Tiger won.