When he went to Elon University (then, College) to play golf, Brad Clayton figured he was on his way to a great, pro career.
“I competed throughout the country, a little bit in Europe, but I never got to the top level,” he recalls.
So, he became one of the PGA’s most decorated golf instructors in the southeast, creating his coaching company he calls, “Puzzle Duck Golf,” because developing a golf came is both like a puzzle … and a duck.
“I always talk about putting the pieces of the puzzle together, the parts of the game, the aspects that create a full game, a complete game,” says Brad.
And he is most dedicated to teaching US military personnel and veterans.
Some, like Brian Lowen, lost his lower leg in Afghanistan.
“Having to hit with a prosthetic,” says Brian, “it changes everything because you can't get over on your front, as well.”
Brad taught him how.
Others, like Dave Catron, have no combat wounds but still benefits from Brad’s approach.
“The thing Brad brings it back to in the first lesson is, 'What are your disabilities?' You know, mental, physical, emotional,” says Dave.
But there is something that bonds Brad to many of these soldiers and veterans, and it is an injury that would have ended most people’s careers.
“My basketball shot's not that good anymore, my pool game's not very good anymore, my golf's not very good, but I can still teach and do what I do there,” notes Brad with a smile. “Outside of the birth of my two children, this is the best thing that's ever happened to me.”
You might be surprised by that reaction … see what Brad is talking about in this edition of the Buckley Report.