Her Viral Moment Teaches Lessons About Life
Golfer with Down syndrome has a message for everyone about how to live your best life.
This story is part of a bi-weekly series that celebrates people who are reaching across a divide to "build bridges" with those different from themselves. The Sparkt Bridges series is made possible with the support of UPMC.
Amy Bockerstette didn't set out to become famous. Or a hero. But once you meet this firecracker, you're not surprised that she is both.
Amy might be best known for making par during a practice hole with defending champion Gary Woodland and pro golfer Matt Kuchar at the Phoenix Open in January 2019.
But all along, Amy has been breaking barriers, building bridges, and inspiring people not just in the Down Syndrome community, but around the world with her message of positivite thinking and experiencing joy in the moment.
Sparkt got a chance to sit down with Amy to hear how -- borrowing from one of her favorite phrases -- she's "got this," and how she believes you've "got this," too.
"I've had a lot of good memories in my life, but that's one I'll never forget," Gary Woodland told Golf Digest of that magical hole in Phoenix . "I never rooted so hard for somebody on a golf course and it was an emotional, really cool experience."
The video of that hole is the most engaged video ever on the PGA Tour's Facebook page (click here - you gotta watch it if you haven't) . But Amy's play wasn't a fluke. She has an impressive record, including two appearances in the Arizona state high school championship, and a golf scholarship to Paradise Valley Community College. "Amy doesn't get nervous, she gets excited," when the spotlight is on her, said dad Joe.
First college tournament with Paradise Valley Community College.
As proud as he is of his daughter's accomplishments, Joe says he's even prouder of the impact her example is having on others, not just in the Down Syndrome community. "Winning means being there, in the arena, participating," said Joe. "It doesn't mean medals and trophies and where you place. Winning means trying, winning means the smallest things are celebrated."
"I got this and you've got this too!" Amy Bockerstette
With Sandra Day O'Connor High School teammates.
(Images: Joe Bockerstette, PGA Tour)
The Sparkt Bridges Project is produced
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Life Changing Medicine.