Stories about alligators on the golf course usually take place where the witness is a safe distance away. However, for one Florida man, he met one face to face on Wednesday. In what sounds like a scene out of a movie, Tony Aarts was casually walking along the fourth hole when a gator grabbed him his ankle. Somehow, he managed to fend it off with his putter and crawl to safety!
Still don’t believe us? WINK News has the story:
North Fort Myers resident Tony Aarts used his Cleveland Golf putter to subdue a 10-foot gator that attacked him Wednesday as he was approaching the fourth hole at Magnolia Landing Golf & Country Club.
“As I was walking about 5 to 6 feet away from the water I heard a splash, and as soon as I heard that splash I knew it was an alligator, and he got me,” Aarts said.
The gator grabbed Aarts by his right ankle. He wound up on his back and rolled into the nearby water hazard as they struggled. “I remember having a club in my hand, and as soon as he had me in the water up to my waist, I started hitting him over the head,” Aarts said.
The gator didn’t give up easily, and soon the water was up to Aarts’ chest. “He was looking at me with his big eyes, and I kept hitting him,” Aarts said. “And I’m thinking I’m getting deeper and deeper, and I thought you’re not gonna get me.”
A subtle change of club technique helped turn the tide in Aarts’ favor. “I started hitting him in the eye socket,” Aarts said. “I hit him three times and he let go of my foot, so I crawled back out and by that time the guys were there.”
The guys were officers from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, who captured the gator and put it down.
“It’s a good thing I had that putter,” he said. “It’s a good, solid, heavy putter.” “I guess a golfer should always keep a club in his hand,” Aarts said.
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