Barber's caddie suffers critical head injury after fall

FILE - In this March 16, 2017, file photo, Blayne Barber watches his tee shot on the 11th hole during the first round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament in Orlando, Fla. Barber had more than a false missile alarm weighing on him Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018, at the Sony Open. His caddie was in critical condition with swelling in his brain from falling on his head at a Honolulu restaurant. Barber said his caddie, Cory Gilmer, was in Waikiki Beach restaurant when he suddenly collapsed and landed on his head. Gilmer was still unresponsive when Barber left the hospital for his third round. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File)

HONOLULU — Blayne Barber's caddie was in critical condition with swelling in his brain from falling on his head at a Honolulu restaurant Saturday.

Barber said his caddie, Cory Gilmer, was in a Waikiki Beach restaurant when he suddenly collapsed and landed on his head. Gilmer was still unresponsive when Barber left the hospital for his third round.

"He's in neurological ICU. A lot of bleeding and swelling in his brain," Barber said. "So I went by this morning. That was the last update I had. He's in pretty critical conditions. His parents are flying in tomorrow."

Barber isn't sure what caused his caddie to collapse. He said a trauma doctor in the emergency room said the staff was trying to control the swelling and bleeding without surgery.

Barber was trying to find the intensive care unit at the hospital Saturday morning when he received a push alert on his phone that a ballistic missile was headed for Hawaii and to seek shelter because it was not a drill.

It turned out to be a false alarm.

"I slept about three hours," Barber said. "That was about the hardest day of golf I've ever played, between that and the texts this morning. I'm pretty exhausted."

Barber took double bogey on his second hole at the Sony Open, closed with three bogeys over his last four holes for a 72 and was 15 shots out of the lead.

"Between that happening to Cory and then just the emotions of facing your own mortality in that moment, it's just been a heavy day, for sure," Barber said. "It's good to face those things sometimes, but yeah, it certainly wiped me out. I was kind of out of it all day, just trying to push through and have something to concentrate on. but it was hard to focus on any of that."

He spent a few minutes practicing and then was headed back to the hospital.

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