APT member, Bryan Armstrong, is a medically retired 4th Infantry Division Combat Vet. He sustained serious injuries throughout his service that hindered his ability to fulfill his duties. After he was released, he knew God had a plan for his life, but wasn’t sure what. Armstrong attended the AT&T Championship down in San Antonio, TX and remembers an encounter with Tom Watson that changed his life forever. During a range session, Watson complimented Armstrong on his swing.. and the rest is history. He felt he was being called “inside the ropes,” which is exactly where he went.
It has not been all smooth sailing, however, ’dealing with my injuries and playing golf has not been easy’ says Armstrong. He acknowledges that the pain he feels is something he has had to become accustomed to. Bryan remembers not having the funds to secure golf lessons, but rather his acquaintances took the time to voluntarily assist him with his game. Within the span of a year, he went from an 18 handicap to scratch, and then turned pro in 2012.
Now, as most of us know, a caddie is an extremely important resource for any professional golfer. They gather important information to help make decisions for/with the player during play, and also help gather information on the course prior to the round. In Armstrong’s circumstance, however, his caddie does the supporting in a unique way.
Armstrong was assisted in this weeks APT event by his caddie, Allen Sale, who is legally blind. “I figure if an ‘almost completely’ handicap man can come out here and play professional golf, why can’t my caddie have a visual impairment?” Armstrong would walk with his caddie down the fairway, guiding him, and Allen would wait for him after he completes his shot.
The two met at church in Oklahoma and have been friends since. After not playing a pro tournament in over a year, Bryan decided it was time to get back ‘inside the ropes’ and brought Allen with him.
After the round, Armstrong tweeted: “…I saw with my own eyes that I CAN compete at this level” and says he enjoyed his visit to APT.