Garth Brooks wants $500,000 donation back from Oklahoma hospital
Garth Brooks wants his $500,000 donation back from Oklahoma hospital after they refused to name a building after his late mother.
Brooks has filed a lawsuit against Integris Canadian Valley Regional Hospital in Yukon because he believed that part of the facility would be named after his mother when he made the donation. He has sued to have the money returned, according to the Associated Press.
The hospital has said that the donation was an "unconditional" gift and that they have done nothing wrong by not naming a building after Colleen Brooks.
"Unfortunately, talks broke down or did not continue or Mr. Brooks was not satisfied with the options we were offering, and that's when he decided to sue," hospital spokesman Hardy Watkins told the Associated Press on Tuesday before the trial.
A judge swore in 12 jury members on Tuesday and opening statements are set to begin on Wednesday.
Brooks' lawyer said the case was between "one of the biggest country music stars that ever lived vs. the largest health care system in Oklahoma."
According to the lawsuit, hospital officials showed the country star mock-ups of buildings bearing his mother's name and "told him that the money was earmarked for such a project."
Brooks' mother died of cancer in 1999 and Brooks' spokesperson said he was "stunned and hurt" that the hospital had neglected to name anything after her.
Watkins said that Brooks had met with hospital officials to discuss the possibility of naming a women's center or the entire hospital after his mother for two years after the donation was made in 2005. The naming options were available for donations ranging from $250,000 to $15 million and according to Watkins, the donation currently remains unspent in a hospital account.
"We certainly recognize Mr. Brooks is an amazing ambassador for Oklahoma, and a very accomplished star in his own right," Watkins said. "We certainly wish it did not have to come to this."
The country singer has won two Grammy Awards and been nominated 14 times. Brooks arrived in court with his wife, country singer Trisha Yearwood.