Local hometown Springfield, OH native is on the cusp of earning his PGA Card for 2012. Erik Compton formerly of Springfield who now lives in Florida shot a 65 last Sunday in the Mexican Open to win the event and pick up his 1st win on the Nationwide Tour. The win put him in 2nd place on the money list and all but ensures he will finish in the Top 25 on the money list and earn his PGA Tour card for the 2012 season. He is currently on the regular tour this week trying to make the cut in the AT&T National at Adironmick in Newtown Square, Pennsylvaina. He played Thursday and Friday with Jim Furyk and Hunter Mahan.
"Everybody knows I'm the guy with two hearts," Compton replied. It's a story that has been told for the last three years, ever since the 31 year old Compton again defied logic, if not death, by getting a second heart transplant. He recieved this heart from former Chaminade Julienne and University of Dayton atlete Isaac Klosterman who was tragically killed riding a motorcycle in Palm Beach, Florida. Compton returned to playing gold only 5 months later to get through the 1st stage of Q-School.
His identity won' change anytime soon. He will always be the guy who after his second heart transplant said "I've been dead. Twice." And he wouldn't have it any other way. With all of the attention he receives it allows him to spread the word about organ transplants just like the heart he recived at the age of 12, and the second transplant on May 20, 2008. "The doctors are schocked and people in the transplant world are shocked. I'm shocked because I always said I would be on tour and play, but now it's a reality. My dream is finally coming true."
It is also hard to fathom for tall the people who have seen this story unfold as well. Charlie DeLucca, head of the Dade Amateur Golf Association in Miami remembers when Compton showed up to play and his parents asked if he could he could take a pull cart. DeLucca was skeptical, unaware that the boy had been diagnosed at age 9 with cardiomyopathy , an enlarging of the heart that hinders it's ability to pump blood. DeLucca thought that he would never see him again and Compton has proved otherwise. "He's not even supposed to be here, He just never lost his determination" DeLuccca said.
It has been suggested that his story was worthy of a movie and asked Compton who should play the elading role. His friends have always said that he looks like Paul Giamatti. Compton was quoted as saying "I don't think there will be a movie, I think movies..you have to have something that's maybe a little bit more unrealistic. Maybe if they make a fictional story and have me winning three U.S. Opens or something."
Meanwhile Compton is just rolling along doing his favorite thing in the world playing golf and soon to realizing a lifelong dream and it's an incredible story. Thanks to the AP for this story.