Jack Newton dead age 72: Golf legend who lost eye and arm in horror propeller accident dies after 'health complications'

Jack Newton dead age 72: Golf legend who lost eye and arm in horror propeller accident dies after 'health complications'

April 15, 2022

FORMER Masters and British Open runner-up golfer Jack Newton has died aged 72.

The Australian lost a play-off to Tom Watson at the 1975 British Open and finished tied for second behind Seve Ballesteros at the 1980 Masters.



His career was cut short in 1983 when he lost an arm and an eye in an accident with a propeller at Sydney Airport.

Describing his father as a "fearless competitor and iconic Australian", Newton's son Clint said he had passed away overnight due to "health complications".

Newton had been battling Alzheimer's in his later years.

His son said: "His passion for sport and contributing to future generations of golfers and the Australian community demonstrates the character of our father, beloved husband, proud brother, adoring grandfather and maverick mate.


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Newton won once on the PGA Tour, at the Buick-Goodwrench Open in 1978, and claimed a total of 13 professional wins, including the British Match Play title in 1974 and the Australian Open in 1979.

He lost in a playoff to Watson at Carnoustie in 1975, and at the 1980 Masters shared second place with Gibby Gilbert behind champion Ballesteros.

His career was ended at the age of 33 when he lost his right arm and eye and suffered severe abdominal injuries when he was hit by a spinning propeller as he prepared to board a plane.

Doctors gave him only a 50-50 chance of surviving, and he spent nearly two months in intensive care and required lengthy rehabilitation from his injuries.

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Speaking about the horror accident, Newton said: "Things weren't looking too good for me.

"I knew that from the priest walking around my [hospital] bed."

Newton went on to become a television commentator and golf course designer while teaching himself to play one-handed, swinging the club with his left hand in a right-handed stance.

He regularly had scores in the mid-80s for 18 holes. That translates to a handicap of about 12 to 14.

The PGA of Australia said it was "deeply saddened" by Newton's death.

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"His playing career and promotion of junior golf through the Jack Newton Junior Golf Foundation will ensure his legacy forever remains embedded within Australian golf," the organisation added.

Newton is survived by his wife Jackie, daughter Kristie and son Clint as well as six grandchildren.


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