I am a fan of Tiger Woods. So don’t take this wrong. But calling it the “greatest comeback in sport history” – I question that. Here is an article about the car crash involving Ben Hogan:
‘In the crash in February 1949 Hogan threw himself across the legs of his wife Valerie to protect her. His injuries were a double-fracture of the pelvis, a fractured collarbone, fractured left ankle, chipped ribs and near fatal blood clots. A surgeon was flown from New Orleans by US Air Force plane to save his life.
To return to golf 11 months later and withstand the physical stresses of winning a major championship entitled the Hogan comeback to be known as the greatest in sporting history.
Read on . . .
Yet the car wreck (the pictures of tangled metal shock, even now) was not his darkest episode. According to James Dodson’s biography, Hogan, then nine-years-old, may have witnessed his father’s suicide from a gunshot to the chest. Only at the end of his life did he discuss the incident with a home-care assistant who Dodson interviewed.
The loss of his father propelled Hogan prematurely into the world of work, selling newspapers and then caddying at 11. Learning the game, he played until his palms were blistered and cracked and soaked them in pickle brine to toughen the skin. He was 28 when he won the first of his 64 tournaments.
In today’s media-centric atmosphere, always trying to “make the story”, a little bit of history should be looked at. I’m quite sure in this story-making newsmaking, 20 years from now there will be another “greatest comeback.”
I’m taking nothing away from Tiger Woods, but Ben Hogan must be spinning in his grave.