Program helps disabled swing into golf

By: Kathryn Bursch - Tampa Bay's 10 News


Temple Terrace, Florida - Golfers will tell you that even their worst day on the course is still a very good day. "Oh, yes, it's a ball to tell you the truth," says Jerry Lemoyne. "They say it's better than sex," his playing partner Garland Frye laughingly chimes in.

And some of the players at the Terrace Hill Golf Club truly know what a bad day is. Army Pfc. Jim White found in Iraq the biggest sand trap of his life. He was a gunner on a Humvee when it hit a roadside bomb. "My legs were broken from the knees down, burned on 53% of my body," says White.

But now a program run by Florida Adaptive Golf is getting White back into the swing of things. "Absolutely, this is helping my body get going again. It's just a great way to get out and get some fresh air and be with a bunch of people who love golf," White says.

Every Friday golfers with various physical problems hit the range with instructors who figure out how they can hit the ball. Florida Adaptive Golf will do whatever it takes; get a special cart or make a special club. And the effort pays off with every swing, smack and smile.

Levi Mitchek used to play golf before his car accident, now paralyzed from the wait down, he plays better. "When you hit that perfect shot you can kind of see what Tiger Woods and them guys feel like," says Mitchek.

It doesn't matter how many limbs you have or which ones work; this is a place where everyone can grip it and rip it. Where putting it in the hole, makes you feel whole.

For information on the program at Terrace Hill Golf Club call Ken Juhn at 813-985-4653.