YUKON – Country music star Garth Brooks is suing his hometown hospital in a legal battle that a spokeswoman says has broken his heart. The singer wants Integris Canadian Valley Regional Hospital in Yukon to return his $500,000 donation because the hospital failed to name a building after his mother. His mother, Colleen, died of cancer in 1999.
The lawsuit is filed in Rogers County District Court. When Brooks donated the money anonymously four years ago, he stipulated that a hospital building be named after his mother. “Mr. Brooks has nothing to add to the petition. This deals with his mother, the home town and the people he grew up with and is deeply personal,” said his spokeswoman Nancy Seltzer, in an e-mail to The Oklahoman. The building was never built, though the hospital campus has undergone $27 million in renovations. “While we can’t comment on pending litigations, we are optimistic this will come to a swift and amicable resolution,” said Brooke Cayot, Integris spokeswoman. Yukon city council member John Tipps thinks the lawsuit goes too far. "Yukon has done a lot to help promote Garth Brooks over the years, and this is what he does to return the favor, sue our hospital over a misunderstanding," Tipps told The Yukon Review. "Maybe Yukon should consider removing his name from the street signs and the water tower. This is very unfortunate for the hospital, City of Yukon and its citizens."