Yesterday, Ernie Banks was honored at the White House and awarded the Medal of Freedom, the highest honor a civilian can receive.
You may remember this photo, taken by my favorite photographer, Jon Willoughby, of Robert Redford and Ernie on opening day a couple of years back. In that post I also mentioned a incident in my life related to Ernie's 500th home run...
Ernie Banks is an icon in Chicago sports...and the only reason I got a detention in High School. (I was listening to my transistor radio in Theology class (my first mistake) when Ernie Banks hit his 500th home run...I felt the need to share it... (stupid mistake) The result, one Saturday morning in the "Breakfast Club."
Ernie is Chicago. A example of positivity, friendly openness, charm, the eternal optimist. A humble man, a hero to all Chicago kids. I love Ernie Banks. (Yes, Oprah was also awarded the same honor, but she is not Chicago, the way Ernie is. )
Years ago my brother Greg met Ernie. Greg asked for his autograph for my nephews and Ernie was so glad to oblige... Ernie asked about the boys and also asked Greg, "How's the wife?". I love that story, and loved hearing it again from Greg this morning, checking my facts.;-). Greg said he was the nicest guy, and his personal favorite too.
Congratulations Ernie, you made us proud. Let's play two!
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