Ben Hogan (1912 – 1997)
Ben Hogan, an American golfer, was one of the greatest players in the history of the sport. Hogan won more than 60 tournaments, including the United States Open four times, the Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) tournament twice, the Masters twice, and the British Open once.
In 1949, a bus struck the car Hogan was driving. The collision fractured his left collarbone, left ankle, pelvis, and a rib. Hogan barely survived the injuries. Doctors feared he might not be able to walk again, much less play golf. Yet, just 17 months after the accident, Hogan won the 1950 US Open. He played the tournament with his legs wrapped in bandages. Hogan was one of the smallest golf champions, weighing only 135 pounds (61kg).
Hogan, through his own diligence, became the finest shotmaker ever in the game and one of just five men (Gene Sarazen, Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, and Tiger Woods are the others) who achieved a career grand slam of at least one victory in each of the four modern major championships: the Masters, US Open, British Open, and PGA Championship. He was the hardest working player in the game during a career that earned 63 victories on the PGA Tour, third-best in tour history, and nine major championships, fourth-best behind Nicklaus, Bobby Jones, and Walter Hagen. He also was probably the least-known star in sport because of a stern, no-nonsense exterior that intimidated outsiders. Because he was reluctant to leave his Fort Worth, Texas home after he retired, he was seldom seen the last 30 years of his life.