Golfer Tiger Woods is still recovering from a near-fatal one-car crash on Feb. 23, when his vehicle swerved into opposing lanes of traffic, hit a tree, and rolled over in Southern California. It is the latest chapter in a controversial life off the golf course for the 45-year-old Woods. The California native's personal life has made more headlines than his golf career in the past decade before he made a comeback by winning the 2019 Masters. Woods' accident happened just after he had his fifth back surgery.
In the affidavit for a search warrant officials used to obtain the "black box" data recorder of the vehicle Woods drove, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy Johann Schoegl said Woods did not even remember driving, reports USA Today. He was found unconscious at the scene of the crash, and when he woke up there, he told deputies he did not remember getting behind the wheel. When he was taken to the hospital, where he was treated for leg injuries, he said the same thing. Schoegl wrote that getting the black box would help authorities in their investigation into the crash.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has been careful to say that the investigation is not criminal, but the affidavit notes that data from Woods' car "constitutes evidence that tends to show the commission of a felony or misdemeanor offense." On Wednesday, Villanueva noted that investigators are "going to go through it and see if they can find out what was the performance of the vehicle, what was happening at the time of impact. And with that, they’ll have more information they can attribute the cause of the accident. And that’s all it is, and we’ll leave it at that, OK?"
Woods is now being treated at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. He will likely not see his children soon, due to the coronavirus pandemic guidelines. They are reportedly in Florida with their mother, Woods' ex-wife, Elin Nordegren. Scroll on for a look at Woods' family life.
Parents and siblings
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Woods was born on Dec. 30, 1975, in Cypress, California to Earl Woods and Kutilda "Tida" Woods. He has two half-brothers, Earl Jr. and Kevin, and a half-sister, Royce, from Earl's previous marriage. Earl was a U.S. Army veteran who coached his son during the early years of his career. Earl died on May 3, 2006, at age 74. Back in 2001, Woods told Oprah Winfrey he considered himself "Cablinasian," because he is one-fourth Black, one-fourth Thai, one-fourth Chinese, one-eighth white, and one-eighth American Indian.prevnext
Marriage to Elin Nordegren
Woods got engaged to Elin Nordegren, 41, in November 2003. She is a Swedish model and the daughter of a politician and radio journalist. They met at The Championship in 2001 and married in October 2004. They built a mansion in Jupiter, Florida, where Woods moved into after their divorce in 2010. Their divorce came months after Woods infidelity scandal began. In November 2009, the National Enquirer published a story about him having an alleged extramarital affair. Days after it was published, he got into a car accident near his Florida mansion.
More tabloid reports about alleged affairs during the marriage continued to surface. Woods also began to lose sponsorship deals and took a break from golf completely. In February 2019, he said he took a 45-day therapy program and apologized for his actions. His divorce from Nordegren was finalized in August 2010.prevnext
Children Sam and Charlie
Woods and Nordegren share two children, daughter Sam Alexis Woods, 13, and son Charlie Axel Woods, 12. Sam was born in 2007 and Charlie was born in 2009. Charlie appears to be following his father into the golf world. Charlie won a junior golf tournament in 2010 and competed in the PNC Championship with his father in December.prevnext
Sam's name is a nickname Woods' father used
In 2007, Woods said Sam's name was a tribute to his father. Sam was a nickname Earl Woods called Woods. "We wanted to have a name that would be meaningful to either side of the family, my side or Elin‘s side, because she was born (the day after) Father’s Day," Woods explained at the time, reports USA Today. "It just happened to fit. My father had always called me Sam since the day I was born. He rarely ever called me Tiger. I would ask him, ‘Why don’t you ever call me Tiger?’ He says, 'Well, you look more like a Sam.'"prevnext
Where Woods' children are today
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Woods' children are reportedly with their mother in Florida. This means they will likely not see their father until he is out of the hospital. "Tiger has been in contact with his kids, but while he recovers, he's fine with them being with Elin in Florida," an insider told HollywoodLife. "He feels that it would be too dramatic for them to see their dad hurt. He's reassured them that he's getting better each day and everything's going to be all right. Everyone's taking things day by day."prevnext
Niece Cheyenne Woods also plays golf
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Woods' half-niece, Cheyenne Woods, 30, is also a professional golfer. She is the daughter of Woods' half-brother, Earl Dennis Woods Jr., and Susan Woods. Earl Woods also coached Cheyenne. She turned pro in 2012 and played in the 2021 LPGA Championship. While attending Wake Forest University, she won the 2011 Atlantic Coast Conference championship.prevnext
Woods is now dating Erica Herman
Woods dated skier Lindsey Vonn from 2013 to 2015. In November 2017, Woods said he was dating restaurant manager Erica Herman. The two are still together, as Herman visited Woods in the hospital.prev