1 batsman", who "takes boyish pride in banging a baseball as far, and running around the bases as quickly, as possible". The pathos of his farewell from baseball was capped off by his iconic 1939 "Luckiest Man on the Face of the Earth" speech at Yankee Stadium. So I close in saying that I may have had a tough break, but I have an awful lot to live for.". When Tarzan creator Edgar Rice Burroughs spotted the outfit, he telegrammed Gehrig, "I want to congratulate you on being a swell first baseman.". Between games of the Independence Day doubleheader against the Washington Senators, the poignant ceremonies were held on the diamond. I’ve still got a long season of life to play out, and my team — America — is absolutely the best in the league. Although there had been no public announcement that he would speak, Gehrig planned some remarks with Eleanor. Lou (we might’ve never met, but I feel like we’re on a first-name basis now) knew his impact would someday transcend the game and his disease would outlast his career .340 batting average. For him, this is crucifixion as well as triumph, because he knows he’ll have to die twice and perhaps the worst ordeal for him is that little death known as Goodbye.”. ", The Yankees retired Gehrig's uniform number "4", making him the first player in Major League Baseball history to be accorded that honor. We took our foes as they came;  The parts that are different from the available snippets of recordings of the speech actually given are shown in brackets in footnotes and replaced here by the words actually spoken: Fans, for the past two weeks, you've been reading about a bad break.  The following text is the official written version published on LouGehrig.com. , For the past two weeks you've been reading about a bad break. "Look at these grand men. There is a 50–50 chance of keeping me as I am. The Pride of the Stadium; With a crowd of 61,808 filling Yankee Stadium and fans from coast to coast listening to the event on radio, Gehrig's uniform No. In the top of the ninth, with Sox icon Ted Lyons holding a slim lead, Gehrig came to bat with a man on base, and the senior Shepherd yelled in a voice that echoed around the ballpark, "Hit one up here, ya bum! Your Pals of the Yankees Team. Lou Gehrig® used with permission of the Rip Van Winkle Foundation. (pause) Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth. Two days later, the New York Yankees announced Gehrig's retirement, with an immediate public push to honor Gehrig. When the New York Giants, a team you would give your right arm to beat, and vice versa, sends you a gift - that's something. When you have a wife who has been a tower of strength and shown more courage than you dreamed existed – that's the finest I know. "That was the simplest play you could ever make in baseball, and I knew then: There was something wrong with me". "When the New York Giants, a team you would give your right arm to beat, and vice versa, sends you a gift - that's something. And it was quite a career: a batting average of .340, 493 home runs, 1,995 runs batted in and a lifetime O.P.S.  In 2006, researchers presented a paper to the American Academy of Neurology, reporting on an analysis of Rawhide and photographs of Lou Gehrig from the 1937–1939 period, to ascertain when Gehrig began to show visible symptoms of ALS.  In 1910 he lived with his parents at 2266 Amsterdam Avenue in Washington Heights. , Although his performance in the second half of the 1938 season was slightly better than in the first half, Gehrig reported physical changes at the midway point. Surely the misfortune of some of the young men will compare as something trivial with what Mr. Gehrig has so cheerfully and courageously faced." (reference: "Gehrig, 'Iron Man' of Baseball, Dies at the age of 37". He did not want Gehrig to share the spotlight with any other all-star. Gehrig died in a white house at 5204 Delafield Avenue in the Riverdale section of the Bronx. The New York Times account the following day called it "one of the most touching scenes ever witnessed on a ball field", that made even hard-boiled reporters "swallow hard". Gehrig had a lifetime batting average of .340 and won the Triple Crown in 1934. If Mankiewicz and Swerling’s words struck a hyperbolic chord, Gehrig’s did not. Physically wrong, I mean. They concluded that while atrophy of hand muscles could be detected in 1939 photographs of Gehrig, no such abnormality was visible at the time Rawhide was made in January 1938. His speech is our decree. I may need a cane in 10 or 15 years. We've been to the wars together; By the time he was asked to speak, he made a gesture to the M.C., the sportswriter Sid Mercer, that he would not say a word. Gehrig has inspired athletes, children, and adults alike because of the audacity that he held upon the podium that warm day in July. ", An article in the September 2010 issue of the Journal of Neuropathology & Experimental Neurology suggested the possibility that some ALS-related illnesses diagnosed in Gehrig and other athletes may have been catalyzed by repeated concussions and other brain trauma.
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