Sun | Aug 20, 2017

Disability Can Never Stop My Putt

Published:Sunday | December 25, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Munn wants to use his accident as an inspiration to the disabled to continue despite the odds.
Munn competiting in the SANTA Charity Golf Tournament.
Gordon Munn and his sister Jodi.
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The name Munn is not unfamiliar inside the world of local golf. Jodi-Ann Munn is currently the top female Amateur Golf Champion along with sisters two and three-time tournament champions, Lisa Blakely and Erin Munn.

The Munn family's biggest inspiration however, comes from an unfortunate event that almost took the life of one of their family members Gordon. An amateur golfer and active golf club member, Munn found himself on the harsh wings of destiny when his motorbike collided with a tree after swerving from a pothole in Florida.

The 1986 accident left the former golf tournament champion partially paralysed on the left side of his body, rendering him with an unforeseen disability and short term memory loss.

Munn recalls to Outlook the life changing accident and his recovery process which had sometimes left him depressed. The former chief sales executive officer of his family-owned business, JABLUM Coffee, Munn notes that he relished his moments travelling throughout the island to meet with representatives and spearheading various sales events, and felt cheated after the accident when he could no longer do so.

After three years of unemployment, he decided to reconnect with the only vice he knew he re-entered the Constant Spring Golf Club and reintroduced himself to his love for golf.

Munn revamped his therapy routine by including the sport, training daily while slowly coming to grips with his disability. But he never lost hope in the process.

His mother, Yvonne Munn, explains the professional potential behind the young Munn as he was introduced to the game when he was 12 years old. He had competed in the famous Orange Bowl in 1982, and placed 23rd in a group of over 100 entrants worldwide. She recalled the fight and vigour in the young Munn, but exclaimed that nothing has changed, as the same characteristics that built him then, were the foundations for his survival now.

Since his disability, Munn has competed in over 20 tournaments, including two SANTA Charity Golf Tournaments, utilising the right side of his body to putt and swing. The golfer wants to use his accident as an inspiration to the disabled to continue despite the odds. Golf, he believes, is an amazing therapeutic sport that can be played by persons of all ages and can be played up until the age of 90 and over.

He believes it is through golf that he has managed to rebuild his mental and physical strength, and despite doctors' diagnosis, have proved many wrong.

He notes, "There is light at the end of the tunnel. Even when it seems dark at the top, keep pushing until you see that light."