Jeff Blume, a graduate of Texas A&M University, designed Grand Pries Golf Club at Brentwater in Montgomery, Texas; and, also in Texas, Elkins Lake (Ravines Course), in Huntsville; La Paloma Golf Club in Amariollo; a renovation of Hide-A-Way Lake Club (West and Center Courses) in Hide-A-Way, Texas; and the Sunset Golf Course in Fort Bliss. He also designed the Farm Golf Club in Lafayette, Louisiana.
Many years ago I was working on Pelican Marsh Golf Club, in Naples, Florida. I was in my mid-twenties and was working for Robert von Hagge’s firm. Mr. von Hagge was a celebrity. He had been on television and was very charismatic. It was always interesting to see how the clients and others acted because he was so well known.
Golf course architects end up working with a lot of different people: company personnel, the golf course management team, and, of course, the construction companies. There were plenty of characters around to keep things interesting.
One such character, a shaper named Robert, was a pretty intimidating guy. The rumor around the course was that he had spent time in jail for killing someone. We were unable to confirm this, but we were cautious around Robert regardless.
One day I was walking around the course with the construction superintendent when we saw an ambulance driving down the course. Then the superintendent’s cell phone rang.
“This can’t be good,” he said.
Robert had just beaten the hell out of a laborer with a shovel.
It turns out Robert asked one of the laborers to help with something, and the laborer, for whatever reason, refused to do it.
The ambulance was on its way to pick up the laborer and take him to the hospital. Robert spent some more time in prison for that one.
The last I heard of Robert, he was preaching in Egypt.
As far as working with different people, it’s always best to be careful and courteous, so that no ambulances are necessary!