August 08, 2018
Professional golfer Jarrod Lyle died Wednesday in his native Australia at age 36 after a long battle with leukemia that inspired his fellow golfers around the world.
Professional golfer Jarrod Lyle dies at age 36 after battling leukemia
Golf Australia reported the news Wednesday with a statement from Lyle's wife, Briony.
“It breaks my heart to tell everyone that Jarrod is no longer with us," she said. “He passed away peacefully at 8.20 pm last night, having spent his final week in Torquay among his family and close friends. ...
“He asked that I provide a simple message: 'Thanks for your support, it meant the world. My time was short, but if I’ve helped people think and act on behalf of those families who suffer through cancer, hopefully it wasn’t wasted.' "
In an emotional Instagram post, Lyle and his family announced last week that he had decided to forgo further treatment and would receive palliative care at home.
Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jason Day and several other golfers wore yellow ribbons on their caps and visors in Lyle’s honor during the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club last weekend.
Lyle was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia at age 17 and had fought through the latest recurrence in 2017, receiving a bone marrow transplant in December. He started an Instagram account in August 2017 to share his journey as he battled cancer.
Professional golfer Jarrod Lyle dies at age 36 after battling leukemia
After turning pro in 2004, Lyle played in 121 tournaments on the PGA Tour earning $1.8 million and won two Nationwide Tour events in 2008.
Known for wearing a yellow bucket hat, he played in 10 events during the 2015-16 season before returning to Australia.
He was known throughout the golf world as a fighter with a big heart.
“I feel like I am the luckiest golfer going around because so many people took an interest in me and took an interest in my fight,” an emotional Lyle told Golf Australia’s podcast Inside the Ropes last week.
“To have so many friends around the world, whether they are spectators, whether they are golfers, whether they’re marshals whatever to have that kind of support to go to every tournament is a great feeling and it’s gonna be hard to leave that behind.”
Australian golfer Robert Allenby has known Lyle for two decades and the two became close friends as the young golfer climbed the ranks to the PGA Tour.
"He has a huge heart and has touched many, many lives," Allenby wrote in a piece for the Players Voice. "His character, his charisma, his generosity, his humility and gratitude are beautiful. He embodies everything good about people."
Former and current PGA Tour golfers expressed their sorrow last week as the photo of Lyle and his two young daughters in a hospital room was shared on social media.
“Absolutely devastated to hear of the heartbreak facing Jarrod Lyle and his family,” Greg Norman wrote on Instagram. “I can’t imagine having to make a decision like this, but there is comfort in knowing how much love he is surrounded by. From family to friends to fans, everyone is with him on this impossible journey. Jarrod - you have exemplified strength and courage for your wife and beautiful daughters, for Australia and for the golf community that has walked this road with you for many years. The world will be less without you."
One of the highlights of Lyle's PGA Tour career came at the 2011 Waste Management Open. On the iconic 16th hole at TPC Scottsdale in front of a stadium of people, Lyle had his first hole-in-one as a professional. "It was a perfect shot. I didn't know what to do, what to say, to do it at the 16th in Phoenix was pretty special," he said.

In recent months Lyle’s health deteriorated as he struggled with his vision and had trouble talking and breathing. Briony wrote on his website in July that Jarrod was on oxygen many days and his stomach was unable to absorb food.
“Overall Jarrod’s exhausted – both physically and emotionally – and has said a few times that he’s had enough of it all,” the update read. “We had some incredibly rough days when he had the infections in his lungs, and we weren’t sure if he’d make it through some of the nights. His mental state is definitely being affected at the moment, which is not something we’ve really had to deal with before.”
After his diagnosis as a teen, Lyle became a supporter of the Challenge organization in Australia, which supports kids with cancer. He wore the group’s yellow duck, Leuk, on his hat.
He is survived by Briony and daughters Lusi and Jemma. A GoFundMe site has raised more than $89,000 for Lyle's family. Bryson DeChambeau donated $25,000 for winning the PGA Championship's long drive contest to the Lyle family.
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