Just a few days late for inclusion into John McPhee's legendarily boring New Yorker piece about how to find golf balls, comes news that a beloved golf ball scavenger at Cortlandt Park in the Bronx was stabbed 16 times shortly before a jogger discovered his body Thursday night.
The man, who remains unidentified until authorities could locate his family, was known simply to players and employees of the public golf course as "Cuba." His long-time scavenging partner has not yet been found.
The world of golf ball scavenging is a lucrative one. Often golfers watch their errant balls head off into the horizon, chalking off the value of the ball to their own faults as a golfer. But as the Times points out, the errant golf ball game has landed entrepreneurial scavengers millions of dollars. Especially adventurous are scavenger divers, who troll the bottom of water traps and lakes for white gold.
Still, for all the romanticism of the profession, the police have very few leads as to why "Cuba" was murdered. According to players, he was a familiar face around the course, who would sometimes wander out of the woods and onto the course to find balls in the rough. Employees said that the man had no other job and was apparently making a decent living by just scavenging balls.