Arnold Palmer died in 2016 at the age of 87 years old. Palmer’s battle with heart problems was cited as the cause of death, per Golf Digest.
Palmer was at the Pittsburgh Medical Center at the time of death and was scheduled to have a surgical procedure on his heart. Golf Digest detailed a series of health ailments that Palmer battled beginning with a pacemaker implant close to two years prior to his death.
Just 25 months ago Palmer underwent surgery to have a pacemaker implanted. That procedure marked the first of a series of health issues for arguably the game’s most popular figure.
In December 2014, he dislocated and fractured his shoulder when he tripped over his late Labrador retriever, Mulligan, in his condominium at Bay Hill Club & Lodge in Orlando, where he annually hosted the PGA Tour event that bears his name, the Arnold Palmer Invitational. Complications from tooth and foot ailments this past winter further slowed him and contributed to his decision to forgo hitting the ceremonial opening tee shot in this year’s Masters. He did make an appearance on the first tee as contemporaries Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player hit shots, but he appeared unsteady and needed help from his longtime friends leaving the tee box.
Last month Palmer underwent an operation to stop internal bleeding in his colon.
The Arnold Palmer Invitational Is One of the Many Ways His Legacy Lives On
The Arnold Palmer Invitational has become an annual reminder of Palmer’s impact on golf and society. The tournament was initially called the Bay Hill Invitational before being renamed after Palmer. The tournament’s website detailed Palmer’s involvement with the event including re-designing the course.
Formerly the Bay Hill Invitational, the re-named Arnold Palmer Invitational Presented by Mastercard bears a special aura in professional golf. The tournament, one of the premiere-event jewels on the PGA Tour, annually attracts one of the strongest fields of the season to one of the circuit’s finest courses with the entire production overseen and directed by one of the game’s all-time greats – Arnold Palmer…
Palmer and his design team revamped the course, redesigning all 18 greens, reworking all of the bunkering and making major changes in four of the holes that altered the yardage from 7,103 to 7,196 and par from 71 to 72.
The Arnold & Winnie Palmer Foundation Is Focused on Youth Development
Prior to his death, Palmer had a legacy of giving back to the community with a particular focus on youth. The Arnold and Winnie Palmer Foundation carries on this legacy.
We believe that together, Arnie’s Army is marching toward a better tomorrow. That’s something we hold close to our hearts. We believe it is our mission to invest in the health, well-being and development of children and youth. We believe that Arnie’s Army is united behind something stronger than ourselves. These “beliefs” are core to the foundational fabric of Arnie’s Army.
Tiger Woods spoke about his relationship with Palmer after news broke of his death back in 2016.
“Thanks Arnold for your friendship, counsel and a lot of laughs. Your philanthropy and humility are part of your legend…It’s hard to imagine golf without you or anyone more important to the game than the King,” Woods tweeted.