The 22-month-old daughter of professional golfer and four-time PGA Tour champion Camilo Villegas has died after doctors found tumors on her brain and spine.
“The PGA Tour is deeply saddened having lost a member of our family, Mia Villegas,” PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said in a statement Monday. “We grieve with Camilo and (wife) Maria and our thoughts and prayers are with the Villegas family.”
Villegas first spoke publicly about Mia's health at a June press conference in which he tearfully revealed she received her diagnosis in the spring.
“She always went to the gym with me; it was one of our bonding spots,” Villegas said at the time in an interview with PGATour.com.
“She was always like a little monkey, climbing on everything. But then one day, I noticed she had not been climbing on anything. She had also been crying a little more than normal at night. She had been teething, so we took her to the pediatrician, thinking it was that.”
Mia underwent surgery after Villegas, 38, and his wife learned she had the tumors when they took her to Nicklaus Children’s Hospital in Miami for scans in March.
“After the surgery, when it was time to remove the stitches, they learned the growth had become pretty aggressive,” he said. “We were told we needed to start treatment right away, so they kept us there. Physically, though, she wasn’t ready to get the kind of chemo doctors were hoping for.”
Villegas has not addressed Mia’s death on social media, although his most recent post on Instagram, shared in February, features a picture of Mia wearing his sneakers. Fans expressed their condolences in the comment section.
“God bless you and your family. So saddened to hear about the loss of your sweet girl,” one person wrote.
“Rest In Peace, Princess. Your family is in our prayers, Camilo,” another person wrote.
Villegas, who had risen to as high as the No. 7 golfer in the world during his career, competed at the Korn Ferry Tour event at TPC Sawgrass last month and finished in 33rd place.