Professional golfer Fred Couples’ second wife, Thais Baker, was estranged. Baker’s two children from a prior marriage, Gigi, 18, and Oliver, 16, survived her death in 2009 following a protracted battle with breast cancer. While daughter Gigi and the golfer were at odds at the time of her death, son Oliver and Couples remained close.
Couples and Baker got married in 1998, not long after Baker received his illness diagnosis. In the end, the two broke up in 2005. In 2007, they made an effort to get back together, but it failed after only six months.
Late in 2008, Baker’s illness reappeared and deteriorated. The couple lived apart but never divorced legally. Even though they had been going through a divorce for the preceding three years, Baker remained a resident of the large Santa Barbara, California, estate until her passing.
While competing in the Northern Trust Open, about two hours south of their homes, couples learned of Baker’s passing. He debated leaving the competition, but ultimately chose to continue.
Couples had already endured loss before Baker’s demise; the pro lost his mother to cancer when he was 34 and his father to leukaemia two years later. In addition, his first wife committed suicide in 2001.