DUBLIN, OH (WCMH) — To say Jack and Barbara Nicklaus have a passion for helping children would be an understatement. One of the best Children’s Miracle Network hospitals in the country is named for the couple–Nicklaus Children’s Hospital in Miami—and the couple has raised millions of dollars for CMN, which includes Columbus’ Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Their new goal is to help raise $100 million over the next five years for the kids through the Play Yellow campaign.
“Jack and I are so excited about the Play Yellow campaign. We announced it at the TPC Championship this year. Partnering our foundation, Children’s Miracle Network, and the PGA Tour on a Play Yellow campaign– it’s very personal for Jack and me, and we’re really thrilled about it.”
The campaign will be on full display at the Memorial Tournament Sunday. They want to see a “yellow out” at Muirfield.
“It’s a very personal thing. We’re just so thrilled. And hopefully we’re having Sunday Day on Play Yellow Day on Sunday. I hope I’ll see a lot of yellow out here on Sunday and raise lots of money for Children’s Miracle Network,” said Mrs. Nicklaus.
Jack is famous for wearing yellow on Sundays, but for a long time the reason why was a mystery. It’s in honor of family friend Craig Smith who was battling a rare bone cancer. Craig passed way in 1971.
“Jack probably called him once a week for the next two years until we lost Craig at age 13. One call Jack made was a Sunday night after he had won a tournament, and Craig said to him ‘Jack, you know why you won?’ and Jack said, ‘well, what are you talking about?’ He said, ‘you won because I had on my lucky yellow shirt,’ and Jack said, ‘well, Craig, if you can wear a lucky yellow shirt for me, I can wear a yellow shirt for you.”
Fifteen years later, the yellow shirt reappeared and so did the reason behind it.
“We’re at The Masters in ’86, and it’s Sunday morning. Jack was kind of rummaging around in his suitcase looking for something to wear, and he pulled out a yellow shirt, and he held it up, looked at me and said, ‘what do you think?’ I said, ‘well you have to wear it. You have to wear it in memory of Craig and in honor of Craig.’ And he did of course win The Masters that year. That was really the first we had made the story public.”
To support CMN and the Play Yellow campaign, we’re yellow to the Memorial Tournament Sunday and use #PlayYellowSunday when posting pictures on social media. To learn more and to donate to the campaign CLICK HERE.