Villegas Makes Caddy Dream Come True for St. Jude Cancer Patient
June 11, 2012
Last week, while most spectators watched the world’s greatest players as they competed in the 2012 FedEx St. Jude Classic in Memphis, fan Michael McNeil had eyes for only one person: His son, Mac. Thanks to Caddy For A Cure, Mac enjoyed the unique opportunity to caddy for three-time PGA TOUR champion Camilo Villegas during the tournament. His dad actually carried the bag, but it was the lightest load he’d carried in a very long time.
It was just over two years ago that an ordinary game of catch with his dad would change Mac’s life, and his family’s, forever. Mac and his dad were passing the football back and forth, but much to his dad’s dismay, Mac – typically a great catcher – dropped pass after pass. Knowing something was wrong, Michael took Mac to the doctor the next day, thinking he had a pinched nerve that was inhibiting his motor skills. The visit led to an MRI, which revealed that Mac had a brain tumor the size of a large tangerine, and it was most likely malignant. Stunned, the family researched the best facility for Mac’s care, and the following day, the family boarded a plane for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis. The next day, Mac underwent brain surgery, seemingly hours after dropping a few footballs in the backyard.
After countless visits back and forth to St. Jude, Mac returned to Memphis for a different purpose, thanks to Caddy For A Cure: Caddying for his favorite golfer, Camilo. It was a day Mac and his dad, as well as Camilo, will never forget. When he heard Mac’s story, Camilo vowed to give him “the greatest day of his life,” and he kept his word. Camilo joked and laughed with Mac throughout the round, talked with Mac about his treatment at St. Jude, and let Mac assist him in reading some of his putts. Michael watched his son with pride and love as only a dad can do, but this time it was so much more meaningful.
“We are truly grateful to Caddy For A Cure, the PGA TOUR, and especially to Camilo for making Mac’s dream possible,” said Michael. “Mac has been through an awful lot, and this day together was priceless. These are memories we will share forever.”
Caddy For A Cure is a non-profit organization that lets fans bid in online auctions for the once-in-a-lifetime experience of caddying for a PGA TOUR or LPGA Tour player during their official practice or pro-am competition round, with 100% of the proceeds donated to charity. The caddy experience with Camilo is just one of many Caddy For A Cure experiences that will take place in 2012.
For more information on Caddy For A Cure and its charitable beneficiaries, please visit www.caddyforacure.com or call (954) 341-4600.
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