Tiger Woods fan so thankful for comeback sends surgeon thank you gift


A Tiger Woods fan was so moved by his comeback that she sent an edible note of thanks to the golfer’s surgeon last week — and received thanks in return.

Claire Rogers, 23, a senior at Boston College who has a 13-handicap and enjoys watching and playing golf, said she had the idea when Woods began the Arnold Palmer Invitational with a 68 after tying for second the previous Sunday at the Valspar Championship.

“My roommates think I’m insane,” Rogers said Thursday by phone.

An intern the last two summers at Golf Digest, Rogers said she was disappointed in never getting to watch Woods play golf as he recovered from back problems, the latest a spinal fusion that was performed on April 19.

With Woods now playing well and stating on numerous occasions that he is pain free, she felt a thanks to the doctor was in order.

“I’m a golf fanatic,” Rogers said. “I’ve always loved the sport. I love all the other great players, but it’s been so much fun to watch Tiger come back as I’m sure it has been for so many people. I’ve always loved Arnold Palmer’s tournament and I got so excited about the comeback I decided to send the doctor a thank you note.”

Rogers did some research to see who performed the surgery — Dr. Richard Guyer of the Texas Back Institute. Although Guyer has not done any interviews related to his treatment of Woods, he was quoted in the news release that announced last April and explained the surgery — anterior lumbar interbody fusion surgery.

Guyer, an orthopedic spine surgeon, described Woods’ surgery in the release as a minimally invasive fusion at the L5/S1 vertebral segment at the base of the spine and it involved removing Woods’ damaged disc and re-elevating the collapsed disc space to normal levels, which allowed one vertebrae to heal to the other.

Woods was not allowed to take full swings for six months, but has been impressive in his return, playing six worldwide tournaments including five this year on the PGA Tour. He tied for second and tied for fifth in his last two starts.

“He (Guyer) must feel pumped when he sees Tiger in contention,” Rogers said.

Rogers decided to send him an edible arrangement and made note of it on Twitter. After receiving the $46 gift, Guyer sent Rogers a note via Twitter the next day with before and after photos.

“I wanted to send him something that would be funny, but he would also understand that it’s a thank you,” Rogers said.

Woods has said that although there is stiffness in his lower back area that he has to contend with, there is no longer the pain that plagued him for most of the past four years. He had three other back procedures dating to four years ago, none of which proved to be successful.

Rogers, who is from East Providence, Rhode Island, is scheduled to graduate this spring and is looking for a job in the golf business.

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