Jun
28
2011
Compton: Not Just That Guy With Two Heart Transplants Anymore
By Stephanie Wei under PGA Tour

Clear eyes, full hearts...can't lose

Two-time heart transplant recipient Erik Compton captured the Mexico Open for his first Nationwide Tour title, firing a final round 65 to win by two shots. Compton earned $126,000, which nearly guarantees that he will earn his PGA Tour card next year. He’s currently second on the Nationwide Tour money list.

As you’re probably well aware, Compton’s story is a rather inspiring one and now his victory adds a nice fairytale twist. Here are some more details via Sean Martin’s Golfweek story:

“My body was just beat to heck this week. This was the hardest test for me, to play golf at this altitude with all these delays,” Compton told Golfweek. “It’s just fitting. There was a lot of adversity to overcome. I never gave up, even though my body was cramping down the stretch.

“You just have to put your mind somewhere else and get the job done.”

….

“I’ve played on sponsor invites, and people have always given me a hard time that I’m ‘the heart guy,’ ” Compton said. “I got that monkey off my back. I’m a player now.

“My lifelong goal has been to get to the PGA Tour and now I’ve done that.”

Looking forward to seeing him continue his great year at the AT&T National at Aronimink this week. And yes, he is playing on a sponsor’s exemption. My two cents on this before Compton’s win and now after remains: He’s on his third heart — give him as many as he wants. It’s not his fault that sponsors choose to give him the spots. Compton goes through the same process as others seeking exemptions, and he happens to have a decent story. Instead of complaining, go get a better one.

But that’s not really relevant at the moment, anyway. Congrats to Compton!

(AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)