George M. Steinbrenner III … “Passing of a Legend”

Sadness has fallen over the Bronx and throughout the whole baseball world as New York Yankees owner George M. Steinbrenner III, the greatest owner in the history of “all” sports, has passed away at age 80.

Now, within two days of the passing of legendary Yankee Stadium public address announcer Bob Sheppard (1910-2010), who passed away on July 11th at age 99, the New York Yankees Universe and Family has lost two of the most iconic figures of the past century, not just in baseball, but in all sports and parts of our society.

“An era of greatness has ended” !!!

It is a sad time for all Yankee fans. But, also, a fitting send-off for these two iconic giants, leaving this great earth on their journey into eternal life in Heaven during Baseball’s All-Star break, and just a week before the Yankees organization celebrates their annual Old-Timers Day at Yankee Stadium this upcoming Saturday, July 17th.  

The Boss leaves us all as a winner [which he was his whole life], as his New York Yankees are defending their 27th World Championship this season, getting off to a great start heading into the All-Star break in first place in the AL East.

There are many wonderful memories and great things that can be said about Mr. Steinbrenner. And, I am sure we will all enjoy reading and viewing these stories and reports today, and in the days and weeks ahead.

For me, my memories began when I first started following the New York Yankees in 1967, as a young boy, during the Horace Clarke days and CBS ownership era. Mickey Mantle was at the end of his Hall of Fame career; Phil Rizzuto was in the broadcast booth always talking about the great Yankees history and tradition; and, the next “Mickey Mantle”, Bobby Murcer, my favorite Yankee player of all-time, was just beginning his great Yankee career.

The Yankees had many losing years and teams during my early days as a life-long, die-hard Yankees fan in the late 1960’s. But, it was the great New York Yankees “history” and “tradition” of “winning” with Hall of Famers: Ruth, Gehrig, Dickey, DiMaggio, Berra, Mantle, Ford, and many other great players throughout the years, that created the foundation of support by many fans [including myself] of the Yankees during those days.  

Then in 1973, a little known ship builder from Cleveland, Ohio, George Steinbrenner, purchased the New York Yankees franchise, and brought the awesome Yankees tradition back to life, which had been dormant for many years since their last World Series appearance in 1964.

And the rest is history …

“Thirty Eight” years as owner [and, still owed by the Steinbrenner family].

“Thirty Two” Winning Seasons.

“Nineteen” Playoff appearances, including …  

“Sixteen” AL Division Titles and “Three” Wild Card berths.   

“Eleven” American League Championships.

“Seven” World Championships.

Which all enhanced the great history of the New York Yankees …

Increasing their World Championships to 27 !!! [and, counting].  

 

Also, Mr. Steinbrenner was a very generous and charitable person, helping and supporting many different people and causes throughout the years.  

 

From “The House That Ruth Built” to “The House That George Built”, Yankee Stadium is “The Home of Champions” and “Home of Championships” !!!  

 

George M. Steinbrenner III is truly one of the greatest of any Yankee in their history !!!

 

I look forward to the tributes that will be given in honor of Mr. Steinbrenner and Mr. Sheppard at this year’s All-Star Game and Yankees Old-Timer’s Day celebrations.

But, the greatest honor I look forward to seeing George Steinbrenner and Bob Sheppard receive, is when both are enshrined into Baseball’s “Hall of Fame”. This is an honor that is long overdue for both these great icons. And, the Hall of Fame will not be complete until both George M. Steinbrenner III and Bob Sheppard grace the sacred walls of the “Hall” in Cooperstown, New York.

 

Thank you, Mr. Steinbrenner !!!

Thank you, Mr. Sheppard !!!

 

May God always bless you, and reserve a very special place in Heaven in which you will both enjoy eternal life, peace, and happiness !!!  

 

Jimmy Curran, “Baseball, The Yankees, and Life …”

    

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6 comments

  1. raysrenegade

    It is a simple reality that you either loved or hated the man based on the actions you had, saw or even experienced first-hand. I can say without a shadow of a doubt I lost a baseball friend who I used to visit in his Rays suite during Yankee games.
    Also got to see him a lot at the old Yankee complex in Tampa doing my Pepsi rounds, but he laways had a handshake and a smile for me.
    This Tampa Bay region is going to miss “The Boss” because of his community involvement, and his committment to his adopted civic second home. Many have relished the man’s generosity, charm and good-natured laughs. I shudder to think of what might have transpired to the Yankees if George had not come aboard..

    Rays Renegade

    http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

  2. jimmy27nyy

    Hi Rays Renegade …

    It is a sad time for all Yankee fans, baseball fans, and all those who knew George Steinbrenner personally [like yourself, Cliff] … Mr. Steinbrenner was a true giant and icon of our times, and in my view, the greatest owner in the history of all sports !!! … There will never be another personality like him !!! … And, as a Yankees fan, there is no doubt in my mind that if Mr. Steinbrenner had not purchased the team back in 1973, the Yankees would not have had anything near the success they have experienced over the past 38 years under the leadership of The Boss … Just think, George Steinbrenner first had his sights on buying the Cleveland Indians back in the early 1970’s, and the deal fell through … Then, a few years later, the Yankees were For Sale, and Steinbrenner moved very quickly to put together a deal – And, the rest is history !!! … A big part of the success of the 1976-’77-’78 Championship teams were the trades made by Gabe Paul, who was from Cleveland, and the Cleveland Indian players [Nettles, Chambliss, etc.] he brought to the Yanks [among many other great trades] … If Steinbrenner purchased the Indians … well, Cleveland could very well have been at the top of the baseball world all these past 40 years !!! … Anyway, the winning was just one part of George Steinbrenner’s life … He was a very generous person, and was always willing to help anyone in need, as well as, support many different charitable causes … Mr. Steinbrenner’s great charity work, including his generosity in the Tampa Bay area, is being talked about [just as much as his winning ways] as people reflect on his life during this sad time of his passing … It was a pleasure to be able to experience all the fun [from 1973] throughout the Steinbrenner Era !!! … I wish I had known Mr. Steinbrenner personally, like you did, Cliff … But, just following the Yankees all these years as a fan, kind of makes it feel like I knew George Steinbrenner, just like the many millions of people who have received much enjoyment following all the actions of this “great” man !!! … Mr. Steinbrenner will be greatly missed by all … May God Bless him and his family. And, may we all keep close to our hearts all the wonderful memories “The Boss” has given to us throughout the years !!!
    .
    Take care, Cliff …
    Thanks for your excellent comments and thoughts !!!
    .
    Jimmy, “BY&L”

  3. southernbelle

    …and may God also reserve for them the best seats in Heaven to watch the Yankees win #28.
    I can’t believe these two are gone. Bob Sheppard just gives you chills because his voice is so beautiful, and represents something so beautiful. I wish I was around when the Yankees weren’t this good, just so I could have seen George transform them into this incredible team.
    -Virginia
    http://southernbelle.mlblogs.com

  4. jimmy27nyy

    Hi Virginia …

    Nice prayer to God !!! … I am sure God will reserve the best seats in Heaven for Mr. Steinbrenner and Mr. Sheppard, to watch and cheer for the Yankees as they continue on their journey to win their 28th World Championship in 2010 !!! … It’s sad that George Steinbrenner and Bob Sheppard have left this earth. But, it’s also great that they both leave as “winners”, with the Yanks defending their 27th World Championship this season by getting off to such a great start in the first part of the year leading the AL East at the All-Star break !!!
    .
    Looking back to my early days as a Yankees fan, it was fun following the Yanks when I was young, even though they did not have great teams in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. But, the Yankees great “tradition” with Phil Rizzuto in the broadcast booth and Bob Sheppard as the public address announcer [yes, Mr. Sheppard’s voice was beautiful], were a link to the awesome past greatness and history of the New York Yankees … When Mr. Steinbrenner purchased the Yankees in 1973, he brought back the Great Yankees “Tradition” and “Pride”, which is the foundation of everything in the Yankees Universe !!! … George M. Steinbrenner III, is very simply the greatest owner in the history of all sports !!! … And, its so great to be a Yankee fan for life … That’s a true blessing from Our Lord !!!
    .
    Take care, Virginia !!!
    Thanks for the visit and great comments !!!
    .
    Jimmy, “BY&L”

  5. bigpapi72

    I always though that Steinbrenner was a jerk. But now that he has passed and I have learned more about him I learned I was wrong. Of course he cared about winning but he cared and seemed like a good person. As for Sheppard even though he was the voice of the Yankees I have always had respect for him. I as aRed Sox fan hate A-Rod, Tex, C.C., and A.J. but respect Jeter, Pettite, Mo, Posada, Sheppard and now Steinbrenner.

    Bob, Base-ket-ball, http://bostonsports.mlblogs.com/

  6. jimmy27nyy

    Hi Bob …

    Well, George Steinbrenner was not perfect … But, when his whole life is summed-up, Mr. Steinbrenner has done far more good than bad [in his personal life and within baseball], and overall has definitely been very good for the Yankees and all of baseball !!! … There never will be another personality like Mr. Steinbrenner, who was one of the greatest iconic figures over the past century !!!
    .
    Of course, the other sad passing in the Yankees family was the death of their long-time Public Address Announcer, Mr. Bob Sheppard … He truly was a gentleman and a really nice person who had the respect of everyone !!! … There has never been a bad word spoken about Mr. Sheppard, who [also] was one of the great iconic figures over the past century !!! … Mr. Sheppard’s voice was a “classic”, and so beautiful to listen to … Both, Mr. Steinbrenner and Mr. Sheppard will be greatly missed !!! … Hopefully, both will be enshrined into Baseball’s “Hall of Fame”, soon !!!
    .
    Bob, thanks for your visit and comments !!!
    .
    Jimmy 27nyy, “BY&L”

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