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Baseball Legend Hank Aaron Dies at 86

Hammerin’ Hank Passes Away

 

The legendary sports icon Hank Aaron has passed away on Friday, January 22 at the age of 86 his daughter confirmed his passing.

“Hammerin Hank” Aaron was born February 5, 1934, in Mobile Alabama, and was one of seven siblings.  Hank’s baseball career began in 1951 when he was signed by the Indianapolis Clowns in the Negro American League and other minor leagues.

Aaron played in the minor league for 3 years before his signing with the Atlanta Braves.  He would go on to have a record-breaking career, becoming the all-time leader in home runs by the time he finished his career in 1976.

Aaron took claim of the record from New York Yankees great Babe Ruth with his 715th home run on April 8, 1974.  The Hammer would finish his career with 755 which remained the record until Barry Bonds would break it.

The Hammer is still considered by many the undisputed home run leader due to Bonds’ career being tainted by the use of PEDs.

Aaron’s mark of 2,297 Runs batted in (RBI) is still the most in the history of baseball showing his versatility and excellence as a player.  He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame on his first ballot in 1982.

The success that Hank Aaron achieved was not only spectacular in sports but also in Civil Rights.  His career was filled with the prejudice that has been an obstacle for African Americans.

Although Jackie Robinson was the first African American to play in the Major Leagues,  Hank Aaron’s rise to breaking Babe Ruth’s home run record came with death threats fueled by racism and bigotry.

Despite the overwhelming pressure placed on him, Aaron was able to show greatness and breakdown barriers in many ways.

His courage in the face of racism along with his athletic excellence earned him several awards including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2002.

We send our condolences to the family of Hank Aaron during this difficult time.

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