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1949 Ben Hogan and his wife Valerie are involved in a head-on collision in thick fog with a Greyhound bus in Texas. Hogan instinctively throws himself across his wife in order to protect her, in the process saving his own life too, as the steering column of his car punctured the driver's seat. Then aged 36, Hogan suffered a double-fracture of the pelvis, a fractured collar-bone and left ankle, damaged ribs and near-fatal blood clots. His doctors feared he would never walk again, much less play competitive, professional golf, but amazingly Hogan left hospital just 59 days after the accident, although circulatory problems, severe pain and failing eyesight would continue all his life.
Ben Hogan at the 1950 US OpenReturning to golf in January 1950 at the Los Angeles Open, he almost won, losing a play-off to Sam Snead, and in June 1950 he won his second US Open in an 18 hole play-off, having already played 36 holes on the final day (right), all the while with his legs in heavy bandaging. Hogan would go on to win six of his nine major championships after the accident.

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