Erik Compton will have a fantastic Saturday, even if he doesn’t play golf.
He did not make it to the Honda Classic cut, so he will not be playing a third round of PGA National.
He’ll be content with it being the 30th year since he got a second chance at his life.
It was February 26, 1992 when Compton, then 12, received his first of two heart transplants. He was diagnosed with viral cardiomyopathy (a condition in which the heart is unable to pump blood effectively) and was 12 years old at the time. Compton has been fighting, fighting and fighting ever since. His opening round of 1-under-69 at Thursday’s Honda Classic was another reminder of his ability to defy absurdly long odds.
Compton can still be very difficult, as was Friday’s second round (12-over).
Compton stated, “I have more pressure experience in my field life combined.”
These words aren’t exaggerated and don’t only apply to his game of golf. He loves to tell people he has been dead twice. After suffering a heart attack in 2007, he drove himself to the hospital, seven months before his second transplant in April 2008. Multiple times he was told that his sporting career was over and that he couldn’t play competitive golf anymore.
He is still here. He’s still playing. Still fighting.
On Saturday, we celebrate even without playing.
Compton stated, “Obviously, 30, is going to be an important milestone.” “I have always honored the date of my second transplant as well as my first transplant. It is important to honor the donor and all of the achievements over the years.
Since 2001, the 42-year old Miami resident has been a professional golfer. He plays on the Korn Ferry Tour now; he has only made one PGA Tour cut in four attempts since 2016. This week, he was playing the Honda on a sponsor’s exemption.
He has never won the PGA Tour. His best finish was a tie at the 2014 U.S. Open. This was the spark that he had in a year when he made $1.8 million, almost half his $4.1million career PGA Tour earnings.
Compton stated, “I’m hungry.” “A lot of men my age are not as hungry because they have made more money than me. Although I’ve had a solid career, I don’t have the same amount of money as a lot of other guys. It keeps you hungry. “… I don’t understand why I shouldn’t pursue my dream.
There’s belief as well as hunger. Although it may have lost some of its strength in recent years, it is still there.
Compton claims he feels great after shedding 20 pounds. Compton insists that his clubhead speed is good enough to be able to compete against the best. A solid round Friday would have earned him a spot on Saturday, which would have given him a check and possibly even the chance to compete.
It’s back to work. Compton is just like that. He’s grateful for it.
Compton stated that there have been difficult times in the past few years. Compton said, “I love to play but there have been some people who have stepped up to make it possible for me keep playing.” I’m making a huge push this year, and that’s exactly what I’m trying do, to put one foot in front the other.