Amputee golfers tee off in Lowndes County - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Amputee golfers tee off in Lowndes County

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May 9, 2003

Lowndes County - Mike Reeder loves the game of golf. He's great at the sport, even though he's missing both legs. "I had to adapt to the change, but with a little practice and learning some new maneuvers, it's just natural now," said Reeder.

Sometimes he plays on his knees, and sometimes he uses a specially designed wheelchair. "I use the chair from tee to green and play on my knees from roughly 50 yards on in," said Reeder.

Reeder is joining dozens of other amputees on the golf course this weekend for the Southern Regional Amputee Classic.

Like Willie Buchanan, whose six feet five inches, and manages to balance all his weight on just one leg. "It's not that hard," said Buchanan. "Any amputee can play if they really want to and put their mind to it."

Amputee Golfer Frank Culpepper organized the tournament. He lost his arm when he was just a teenager in a factory machine accident. "We're amputees, not handicapped," said Culpepper.

He even designed his own prosthetic that has helped him and other amputees win national tournaments. "It just slides on to the club and gives you a good grip, really better than any hand would," said Culpepper.

The amputees say tournaments like this allow them to share their creative techniques and show others that anything is possible.

posted at 2:00 by ashley.harper@walb.com