WEST PALM BEACH, FL (WFLX) - Recently, Jack and Barbara Nicklaus hosted a charity dinner at Morton's to celebrate their latest accomplishments, raise money for their Foundation, and provide tastings of Jack Nicklaus' line of fine wines served at all Morton's The Steakhouse restaurants.
It was then the golfing great shared how a swallowed crayon started he and his wife's desire to better the healthcare for children in Palm Beach County.
"She [Nancy Nicklaus-O'Leary] was about 11 months old, and they found it [ingested crayon]. They saved her life at Columbus Children's Hospital," said PGA Champion and North Palm Beach resident Jack Nicklaus. "So Barb and I said if there's anything you and I can ever do beyond that point, we'd like to do something for kids."
Despite winning 18 professional major-championship titles, Jack Nicklaus and his wife, Barbara, never lost sight of their commitment to helping children.
Six years ago, the couple opened the Jack Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation. "We're bringing subspecialists up into our area, and it's helping families that maybe had to drive to Miami two, three, sometimes, four times a month for subspecialty services. And we've already seen some 1,300 children in the past year, and we're opening our second Nicklaus Care Center in Palm Beach Gardens in March," said Nicklaus' wife, Barbara. "It will also be subspecialty as well as after-hours clinic and a full rehabilitation center."
The couple also founded the Safe Kids Program which reminds everyone to 'look before they lock'. "Sometimes, it takes a tragedy to get things moving," said Mrs. Nicklaus. "We lost a grandchild about six years ago. This just made us believe, especially in the Safe Kids Program, that we wanted to do everything we can for children in our area."
The Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation was formed in 2005 for a simple reason: to help kids in the community where Jack and Barbara Nicklaus and their children and grandchildren had already lived and worked for decades.
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