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Old 11-14-03, 02:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
Edwin's Avatar
Join Date: Jul-2002
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,355
Golfer Bitten in Head by Rattlesnake

Does this make golf an exxtreme sport now?

SAVANNAH, Ga. - When Roy Williamson hit a tee shot off the fairway, the lie turned out to be much rougher than he thought. Williamson, 60, was bitten in the head by a rattlesnake when he went to retrieve his ball from some wetlands.

"I saw my ball pretty much in plain view," Williamson said Thursday, a week after the encounter. "Unfortunately, it was being tended to by a rattlesnake that I didn't see."

He said he picked up the ball and felt something scratch at his right temple as he stood up, slapping at what he thought was a briar. He saw blood and then the rattler, "a good 6 1/2 or 7 feet long."

The men Williamson was playing with his son, brother and brother-in-law came running in response to his screams. He remembers reaching the clubhouse, but the next thing he knew, it was three days later.

Doctors determined that the snake bit him twice, and the venom quickly spread throughout his body.

Alan Cale, general manager of Henderson Golf Club, said his employees roped off the area and posted warning signs. Professional snake handlers were called to assist in rounding up any snakes at the course.

"It's an unfortunate accident, but on a golf course out in nature you're going to have wildlife," Cale said.

Scott Courdin, wildlife curator at Georgia Southern University, said golf courses can be deceptive because they are so well kept.

"Golf courses may be in the middle of a neighborhood or surrounded by development, but that doesn't mean there's not going to be snakes there," Courdin said.

He said rattlers, water moccasins, copperheads and coral snakes are plentiful in Georgia.

Williamson said he will play golf again but will be much more careful.

"If I go out now and hit a ball off of the fairway in any fashion or form, I will not go after it," he said.

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