It’s one of those freak accidents that are the stuff of nightmares. Hit on the face by a sharp stone that flies when a car wheel whizzes over its edge. Hit over the head by a falling branch of a huge palm tree. Or hit in the eye by a wayward golf ball teed off by a star player.
That’s exactly what happened to 49-year-old Corine Remande, who had travelled from Egypt to watch the Ryder Cup golf tournament in Paris recently. The incident happened on the opening day of the Europe vs. U.S. event when American Bruce Koepka hit an errant tee shot that veered off course and hit Remande in the eye. She says she has been blinded permanently. She is considering legal action against the tournament organizers, Ryder Cup Europe and the PGA of America. She said a scan had revealed a fracture in the right eye socket and “an explosion of the eyeball.”
What should Koepka and the organizers do? Some kind of reparation is warranted.
30It happened so fast
It’s terrible to hear of such an accident to a spectator watching a favorite game. The randomness of the freak accident has changed Remande’s life.
46It is distressing to hear that someone might suffer long-term consequences from a ball strike.47
The player whose errant shot ruined the victim’s eye has apologized, too.
61one of the worst days62according to CNN. The 28-year-old golfer said he was “heartbroken” and “all messed up inside” when Remande revealed how severe her injury was.
Koepka has shown consideration, having asked to be kept informed of her condition after going over to the Frenchwoman to check on her condition.
The victim, on her part, has been a dutiful fan and apparently nurses no grudge against Koepka. In an interview with AFP, Remande said she downplayed the incident during the accident, so the golfer would stay focused on his game.
She has said she is considering legal action against the organizers of the tournament only to recoup medical costs.
In such a situation, the Ryder Cup and PGA America should offer to pay Remande’s medical expenses. That’s the least they can do to salvage the situation and provide any relief to the victim.
In keeping with tradition in such cases, Koepka presented Remande with a signed glove.
The BBC’s golf correspondent says, “Players usually offer a signed glove to the victim, as if that will ease the pain.
“The majority [of players] … remain silent in the wake of wayward blows.”
Koepka hasn’t been a silent type. But to make amends he and the Ryder Cup should part with some money for the victim. That gesture will help make golf a “gentleman’s game,” as cricket was once known.