Lou Gehrig was an athlete of strength and endurance. These two qualities were what earned him the nickname "Iron Horse." These two qualities could not however, withstand a rare form of degenerative disease - amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This disease is now known as Lou gehrig's disease. And after his diagnosis there was no chance that he would ever play basbeball again.
In the beginning of the 1939 season, Gehrig played the first eight games. In these eight games he had only four hits. After hitting a ball back to pitcher Johnny Murphy, Lou had a tough time making it to first base before the throw. Arriving in the dugout he was complimented on his "good play" by teammates. Lou knew it was time to bow out when he received this reponse on such a play. As captain, Lou brought the line up card to the umpires as usual on May 2, 1939. His name was not included on the roster. "Ladies and gentlemen, Lou Gehrig's consecutive streak of 2,130 games played has ended," was heard by all from the game announcer that day.
On July 4, 1939, taking a moment to breathe in attempt to fight back tears, Lou Gehrig delievered an emotional speech that will be remembered by sports fan everywhere, calling himself "the luckiest man on the face of the earth." After his delivery, Babe Ruth hugged his former teammate whispering in his ear ending the long silence between the two.
Lou Gehrig is remembered as a talented, kind hearted and phenominal athlete and man with a winning attitude. He was described by his wife as a "square, honest guy" to Edward Hermann while he tried to place his character in preparing to play Gehrig in a movie. June 2 marks the anniversary of his passing and we would like to honor him by remembering the many amazing qualities of a man whose character "lay somewhere between the average and the mythic."