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Old 01-21-2016, 01:59 PM   #1
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Nicole Castrale, Open Letter Stepping Away

Dear Fans:

Sometimes you get to retire from a career you love on your own terms and then sometimes the career has a way of retiring you.

After multiple surgeries, dedication, determination and successful comebacks, my most recent setback is something that, unfortunately, I simply can’t overcome. In November, I had career-ending back surgery that I had been putting off as long as I could. Since my college days at USC, I’ve been fighting the inevitable while strengthening my body and mind in the hopes of keeping a childhood dream alive.

I’ve had ample time to reflect over the last two years as I played here and there trying to get back to the form that made me an LPGA winner and a two-time Solheim Cup team member. I can say happily that my dream of playing golf at the highest level did actually come true.

I have also now come to grips with the reality that dreams can be shattered when your body won’t let you compete at the level you have become accustomed to.

I know that I’ve had a wonderful career as a player and I am at peace with the idea that my full-time playing days are now over. With that, I am now stepping away from the game I love so much and “retiring” from playing professional golf.

Along the way, I have been blessed by so many relationships. My closest friends are those that I have made throughout my journey. There have been coaches who inspired me and cared about me, fans who cheered for me and appreciated my efforts, sponsors who stood behind me and truly partnered with me, media members who covered me and shared my story, and above all, family members who loved me and lived the dream with me.

I say a sincere THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to all those who have been there at every turn.
While it is so difficult to say “goodbye,” I am now excited to say “hello” to a new chapter in my professional life. I have new business interests and opportunities that I am so thankful for, television opportunities that have me as excited as I could ever have imagined, and aspirations of giving back and making a difference in this wonderful game of golf.

I truly love the LPGA. I was proud to be a player and honored to be an ambassador. I will always care deeply and I hope there will be opportunities to give back to an organization that has given me so much.

My greatest joy in life is being a Mom. Now, I am blessed to have even more time to devote to my daughter. And if there is one thing that stands out among all things during countless hours of rehab and reflection, it is that I now have something that we all take for granted – time. I am so looking forward to what life has in store.

I have been given the gift of a dream that became my reality. Some people never get to live that out. I did. I thank God every day for my blessings and am truly grateful.

The pictures you see here are just a glimpse of so many great memories and friendships that I will cherish forever.

I can’t wait to see everyone soon!

Don't fear failure. — Not failure, but low aim, is the crime. In great attempts it is glorious even to fail.

---Bruce Lee

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Old 01-21-2016, 03:17 PM   #2
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One of my favorites.

She was good on TV. Hopefully she can do more commentary.
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