Space in that hall is reserved not only for those who can hit the fastball, but those who have, on a grander scale, influenced a nation’s culture. The Hammer did his share of societal shaping with a 33-ounce piece of sculpted ash.
Before leaving for D.C., Aaron sat for an interview in the southwest Atlanta home he has been in since 1974. What emerged was another portrait of an octogenarian sporting icon at ease with the sum of his life.
Aaron doesn’t use the tennis court at his home anymore, and in fact jokes about turning it into a garden. Doesn’t fish the five-acre pond out back of the house. But otherwise, “I feel good, I really do,” he said.
THE BRAVES' MOVE TO COBB COUNTY
He said he shed a tear when Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium was imploded. He’ll be saddened as well when the Braves bug out of Turner Field.
“I never played baseball in that park, but it seems I’m connected to it somehow,” Aaron said.
THE BURDEN OF NO. 715
Letters that deserved no more than the flame of the fireplace or the muck of the landfill are boxed in Aaron’s attic. He kept some of the good ones, too, the ones that urged him up and over Ruth’s record.
Not that Aaron even glances at any of the old correspondence anymore. He just can’t throw it out.
Forty years removed from the moment, Aaron still wishes he could have savored it more.