PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Jeff Maggert withdrew from The Players Championship, telling tournament officials that his brother died in a small plane crash in Colorado en route to his son’s college graduation.
The Gilpin County (Colo.) Sheriff’s office said one man died and a 23-year-old passenger was injured Thursday afternoon when the single-engine plane crashed into a snowy mountain in Black Hawk, about 40 miles west of Denver.
The Aspen Daily News reported the 1965 Cessna 1982 was co-owned by Barry Maggert and Carroll Winkler, who said that Maggert was flying the plane to Boulder for his son’s graduation from the University of Colorado.
Maggert, the golfer’s older brother, has 23-year-old twin sons, Lee and Bryant. Lee Maggert was to graduate Friday.
Jeff Maggert played Thursday afternoon and opened with an even-par 72. He learned of the plane crash when he finished his round and was scrambling for information before withdrawing late Thursday and flying to Colorado.
He confirmed to tournament officials that his brother had died. The Gilpin County Sheriff’s office said Friday morning it was waiting for family to arrive before releasing the names.
Maggert is a three-time winner on the PGA Tour who has played on three Ryder Cup teams. He lives in Houston and has five children, including 3-year-old twin girls.
Barry Maggert, an engineer from Carbondale, Colo., made an unsuccessful candidacy last month as a town trustee.
Alpine Rescue Team spokesman Bill Barwick said about 50 people, some on snowmobiles, helped the rescue effort in mountainous terrain at 10,400 feet. He said the sheriff’s office was waiting for daylight and better weather Friday to bring down the body.
The 23-year-old passenger was taken to a Denver’s hospital. His condition was unknown. FAA spokesman Mike Fergus in Seattle said one of the people on board called 911 from a cell phone after the crash.