BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Hammerin’ Hank is what baseball fans everywhere called Hank Aaron because of his sweet swing, a swing that forever changed the game of baseball.
“He’s the greatest hitter I’ve ever seen,” said former Negro American League baseball player Ernest Fann.
Hank Aaron’s 755 career home runs, which stood as baseball’s golden mark for decades, is something Fann always admired.
“Man, I would put my entire body into my hits, but Hank, he would just flick his wrist and how it would go so far, I don’t know,” said Fann.
Fann and Aaron became friends in 1974, but Fann says their friendship went beyond the diamond.
“He was like a father to me. There were things I would go to him and ask him that I wouldn’t even ask my own father,” said Fann.
From being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame to the countless awards and recognitions, Fann says Hank Aaron’s legacy is about more than just baseball as he gave a voice to black men trying to play the game.
“Don’t look at what he did, look at the way he lived his life. This is what I want young kids to learn from him, no matter what is put out in front of you, go out there and conquer it,” Fann said.
Hank Aaron, born in Mobile, played 23 seasons in the Major Leagues and to this day, he still holds Major League records for RBI’s, total bases, and extra-base hits.
Hank Aaron died at the age of 86.