Green begins recovery process after leg amputation

June 15, 2009
Craig Dolch, PGATOUR.COM Contributor

Champions Tour member Ken Green, a five-time PGA TOUR winner in the 1980s, underwent successful surgery Monday to amputate his lower right leg due to injuries he sustained in a fatal-accident last week.


Green, 50, had part of his right leg below the knee removed after doctors determined the injuries were so severe he would never have a functional knee, ankle or foot.

Make a donation
The PGA TOUR has established a trust fund so that PGA TOUR and Champions Tour players and others can ease Green's financial burden. If you would like to make a donation, checks should be made out to "Ken Green Trust" and mailed to the address below.
Ken Green Trust
PO Box 1811
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32004-1811

The three-hour operation was performed by surgeons George Russell and James Woodall at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson.

"The surgery went well, as expected," said Kevin Richardson, Green's agent and close friend. "Ken tolerated it well and he's back in his room recovering. He's out of the woods and back in the fairway."

Green was in the back of his recreational vehicle traveling on Interstate 20 near Meridian, Miss., last Monday when the right front tire blew, causing the RV to veer off the road and go down a deep embankment before hitting a tree. The accident killed Green's brother, William, who Green said was driving; Green's girlfriend, Jeanne Hodgin of Greensboro, N.C.; and Green's German Shepherd named Nip.

Despite the amputation, Richardson said Green has not given up hope of returning to competitive golf. In fact, Richardson said that's why Green consented to the amputation -- Green had been told by doctors he would never have a functional lower right leg.

"Ken said, 'If (leg) is not gonna work, then take it off so I can play,' " Richardson said.

Green will likely be hospitalized at least a week before returning to West Palm Beach, Fla. -- his longtime residence -- to begin months of intense rehabilitation.

The PGA TOUR is setting up a fund to help defray Green's medical expenses with donations coming from players and their wives.