You want sensitive hands for golf, only not in the way Cathy Gerring’s hands are sensitive. Her fingers are affected by paresthesia, the nerve damage which has been her unlucky lot since she was the victim of a raging fire at the 1992 Sara Lee Classic at Hermitage Golf Club in Nashville, Tennessee.
Gerring, now 59, had won three times in 1990 and was two shots off the pace at the Sara Lee when she went to meet her husband, Jim, for Saturday lunch in the tournament’s hospitality tent. “Try the chicken,” recommended Jim, then the head professional at Muirfield Village.
When it was Cathy’s turn to be served, the chef said that his burner had switched off a few minutes earlier. Would she mind waiting a moment? Alas, the man who came to remedy the situation failed to notice that the flame was still lit before he started to top-up the fuel supply. Barely had he begun than a blue flame spiraled sky high. As he leapt back, some of the fluid cascaded over Cathy, whose face promptly caught fire.
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