When your hero has a hero, you pay attention.
Hank Aaron is one of the greatest players in the history of baseball. To my Father, Aaron is THE best to ever lace ’em up.
There’s a reason Dad always wore 44 when he played softball. It’s because “that’s what Henry wore.”
There’s a reason Dad always wanted my brother and me to find 44 – regardless of the sport we were playing – and grab it. It’s because “that’s what Henry wore.”
I remember my brother coming home from high school baseball practice with a jersey that had the number-5 stitched on the front and the back.
Dad taught us that day that Hank Aaron wore the number-5 his rookie season in 1954.
Dad also taught us how Hank Aaron played the game the right way. He could run, hit, throw, and play defense. Hank respected the game, even though not everyone who watched respected him as a man of color.
Today, I told my Hero that his Hero had passed. The collective groan from Dad and Mom who were on speakerphone in the car told me all I need to know about what Hank Aaron meant to them, baseball, and the city of Milwaukee.
His influence spread well beyond baseball. His perseverance alone is Hall of Fame worthy.
Hank Aaron is a American treasure and hero in every sense of the word.