Web.com Caddie Leaves Job for Oil Field

Veteran caddie leaves the fairways for  oil field

More than 100 caddies have been working alongside their players this weekend  to try and win a piece of the $550,000 up for grabs at this year’s Web.com  tournament at Midland Country Club.

For 52-year-old Ohio native Mike Sturgill, it’s been a chance to revisit a  passion he left almost a year ago to work in the oil fields of the Permian  Basin.

Sturgill is a Midland-based driver for Musslewhite Trucking Co., which  provides trucking services in Texas and New Mexico. He received the job only a  day after applying last November, he said, marking the end of a nearly 21-year  career of carrying bags on PGA and Nationwide tours.

His caddying career had become plagued in recent years by his arthritic  knees. But this week, Sturgill took off three days to caddie for 30-year-old  Brent Delahoussaye. The two worked together in the past, and Sturgill jumped at  the opportunity to hit the fairways again when Delahoussaye contacted him.

“I love the competition, the heat of the moment,” Sturgill said. “It’s about  trying to get your player to play the best he can and helping him make decisions  — just being part of a team.”

Sturgill’s caddying career started in 1991 after a bad divorce and new lease  on life. He had caddied before as a youth in his hometown of Hartville, Ohio,  and at the age of 12, his 14-year-old best friend suffered life-threatening  injuries in a go-cart crash. His friend’s death four years later catapulted  Sturgill into a life of drug addiction and ultimately led him face-to-face with  a possible 56-year prison sentence.

He ended up spending only a year behind  bars, and emerged a changed man who had found Christ after learning that his  best friend’s last words to his family were in prayer for Sturgill to accept  Jesus into his heart. He still chokes up as he remembers hearing his friend’s  dying wish.

After a short career in trucking and his divorce, Sturgill picked up  everything and drove to the Texas Open in San Antonio, where in the parking lot  he landed a carrying gig for Curt Byrum.

“No one knew me; I just showed up,” he said.

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