Erik Compton has been honored with the PGA TOUR Courage Award by the Player Director’s Panel and PGA TOUR Commissioner. It was announced Wednesday.
The PGA TOUR Courage Award is a new acknowledgment this year. Previously known as the Comeback Player of the Year Award, which has not been awarded since 2010, it is now aimed to honor a player who has overcome adversity. “We made it for someone who has overcome severe adversity, away from someone that is coming back from something that wasn’t career threatening.” 1
Erik’s second year on tour concluded with a 99th place finish on the FedEx Cup point’s list. This is also the first year Erik has retained his Tour card, just five years after his second heart transplant. During the 2013 season, his career best, Erik earned four top 25 finishes, including a fourth place at the Honda Classic.
In 1992, Erik was diagnosed with Cardiomyopathy and began the process of waiting for his first heart transplant which he received several months later. Over the following 9 years, Erik rose to the rank of number one junior golfer in the country in 1998, competed for the University of Georgia and turned pro in 2001.
As recipient of the PGA TOUR Courage Award, Erik embodies the spirit of this honor. The tenacity which fueled his strength after receiving a heart transplant not once, but twice, drives his PGA career. “Growing up in Miami, watching the game’s greats play Doral, and trying to be like them while playing Melreese, made golf my best medicine. Being limited by my swing, not my heart or my body’s battle with anti-rejection medicine, always kept my focus on what I could do, and away from what I couldn’t. It is a true honor to be the first player to receive this PGA TOUR Courage Award.” The recipient of this award gets to designate a $25,000 donation to the charity of their choice. Erik chose the Arnold Palmer Medical Center Foundation and South Miami Heart Center at South Miami Hospital.
1 Hoggard, Rex. “Stenson Had A ‘Comeback’ Year, But Won’t Receive Award.” www.Golfchannel.com. n.p. 23 Sept, 2013. Web. 1 Oct, 2013.