Country singer Garth Brooks is unhappy that the money he donated has been misused, launching a lawsuit against a hospital in Oklahoma which received the check in 2005. Brooks gave Integris Canadian Valley Regional Hospital $500,000 to create a building named after his late mother, but it was never realized.
During the first two years after the money was handed, Brooks was shown full size model of a building in the hospital complex bearing his mother's name in neon lights. They even planned a ribbon-cutting ceremony introducing the Colleen Brooks building to the public, but then a year later the hospital said the money would be used "for what Integris had 'earmarked' the money for, without further discussion".
Integris claimed the donation from Brooks was "anonymous and unconditional" and that the singer added stipulations for the money's use after the check was given. "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 said Tuesday, January 17 before the trial began.
Brooks made a court appearance in Oklahoma on Tuesday, accompanied by wife Trisha Yearwood. "It's more than a business deal for him," said John Hickey, an attorney representing Brooks. "It's about his mom. It's about his hometown, and it's about promises that were made by the hospital. In his opinion, they just didn't do the right thing."
Opening statements in the lawsuit are scheduled for Wednesday. A jury of nine women and three men has been selected.