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JUNE
28

 

1975 Lee Trevino is struck by lightning during the second round of the Western Open at Butler National Golf Club in Oak Brook, Illinois. Trevino and Jerry Heard were sitting at the edge of a marsh beside the 13th green, waiting to resume play during a storm delay. Trevino was leaning against his golf bag reading a magazine as his caddie headed to a nearby refreshment stand to fetch him a drink. Lightning struck somewhere nearby and travelled through the marsh and up its banks, reaching the players through their metal spikes before exiting through their backs. Both were knocked unconscious and both subsequently required operations to repair spinal damage.
Trevino would never be free from back pain again, but still went on to complete a hugely succesful career on both the regular PGA and Champions Tours. With five majors already to his name at the time of the accident, he would gain a sixth at the 1984 PGA Championship, as well as a fifth Vardon Trophy in 1980. And with his trade mark humour, when asked afterwards what he would do if he was ever caught out in a thunderstorm again, he would reply, ".. hold up a 1-iron. Not even God can hit a 1-iron."

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