Jack Nicklaus, center, throws his driver while posing for photos with Arnold Palmer and Billy Payne, Chairman of the Augusta National Golf Course after hitting ceremonial drives on the first tee during the first round of the Masters golf tournament
AP Photo/Chris Carlson
Tuesday, December 02, 2014

COLUMBUS, Ohio --  Golfing great Jack Nicklaus will receive Congress' highest civilian honor, the Congressional Gold Medal.

Legislation authorizing the award for Nicklaus cleared Congress late Monday and now awaits the signature of President Barack Obama.

Nicklaus says he's humbled and honored to be among those who've been awarded the medal. Past recipients include Rosa Parks, Robert Frost, Joe Louis and Neil Armstrong.

Nicklaus was born and raised in Ohio near Columbus. He won a record 18 major golf championships during his career.

He says golf has allowed him and his wife Barbara to found the Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation and to help others in need.

Nicklaus received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005. He and Arnold Palmer are the only golfers to get both awards.

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