SGT Mike Downing
“My name is SSG Michael Downing US Army (Ret), I was wounded in Afghanistan in September of 2008 and was left a double amputee (both legs) from an IED blast. From that moment I thought there were many things I would never do again, I and one of them was to play golf.
I was introduced to Bob Beach PGA Professional and Jerry Donovan a T5 paralyzed golfer who were helping wounded Veterans learn golf through their clinics. They welcomed me with open arms, provided me with lessons, let me use Jerry’s Para Golfer machine and fitted me with a new set of golf clubs.
This has been an amazing experience because for me it is not just a matter of playing golf but all the things that go along with it. It means being able to get together outdoors with my able bodied friends for a day and doing something you all can do together. Out on the course there is no difference between you and any other golfer…you fit right in.
For me and other Veterans it is a way for us to feel like everyone else even though we may not be exactly the same. The only handicap is your score itself.”