The University of Oklahoma family lost one of its most generous supporters and visionaries this past weekend when Jimmie Austin passed away at age 90.
Austin, a native of Sasakwa and longtime Seminole oilman, donated $1 million of the $4 million needed to redesign the OU course in 1996.
"Mr. Austin meant so much to this golf course and it's obvious the golf course meant a lot to him," said Rodney Young, OU's director of golf. "He had the dream and desire to help make this course a first-class facility, and he helped make that happen."
Golf was a vital part of Austin's life for many years. Besides his contributions to the OU course, he helped Seminole expand its old nine-hole municipal course into a top 18-hole layout in 1975. While operating that course for a number years, Austin became an avid backer of youth golf.
His devotion to young golfers was never more evident than in recent years as his generous support helped turn OU's inaugural 1997 Sooners on Tour event into a popular annual fund-raiser that brought in thousands of dollars for the local youth golf program.
"Mr. Austin was always at every golf outing OU put on, whether it was a youth clinic or something involving the OU golf program," said former OU All-American golfer Hunter Haas. "Mr. Austin's passing is a great loss, not only for his family, but for his extended family at OU." "Jay C. Upchurch
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