ATLANTA, Ga. (CW69 News at 10) — News of Hank Aaron’s death shook fans in Metro Atlanta and drew them to Truist Park on Friday to remember the baseball legend.
Dee Van brought her sons to Hank Aaron’s statue inside Truist Park to pay tribute to one of the greatest players of all time. “Hank Aaron meant a lot to us, just personally, and it’s nice to know they have someone they can look up to as a role model,” she said. “We say a prayer for him so he can have a nice new life in heaven,” said her seven-year-old son, Jonathan Verett.READ MORE: Eric Clapton Announces Concert Dates Including In Tampa
The Atlanta Braves right fielder later served as the Braves’ Vice President. Aaron was also a well-known philanthropist and business owner. Former Braves Public Relations Director Bob Hope says their friendship goes back to 1966. “Every child should have a role model like Hank. He’s gracious, he’s thoughtful,” Hope said.
Fans paid tribute to Hank Aaron at The Battery and Truist Park in Atlanta. pic.twitter.com/GtdEkvenT3
— Valencia E. Jones (@vjreports3) January 23, 2021
Governor Brian Kemp shared what he’ll remember most about Aaron during a phone call with CW69. “You would have never known he did so many things in sports or life. He didn’t really wear that on his shoulder. He just went about his business, was a great tole model,” Kemp said.
The Kemp family issued this statement:READ MORE: Child Tax Credit: When Will You Get Your First Check?
Our family is heartbroken to hear the news of Hank Aaron’s passing. Hank Aaron was an American icon and one of Georgia’s greatest legends. His life and career made history, and his influence was felt not only in the world of sports, but far beyond – through his important work to advance civil rights and create a more equal, just society. We ask all Georgians to join us in praying for his fans, family, and loved ones as we remember Hammerin’ Hank’s incredible legacy.
Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and others weighed in on Aaron’s death and his impact on the city. She issued this statement:
Derek, our family and I join the nation in sending heartfelt condolences to Mrs. Billye Aaron, the beautiful wife of Henry “Hank” Aaron for nearly 50 years, and the entire family. This is a considerable loss for the entire city of Atlanta. While the world knew him as ‘Hammering Hank Aaron’ because of his incredible, record-setting baseball career, he was a cornerstone of our village, graciously and freely joining Mrs. Aaron in giving their presence and resources toward making our city a better place. As an adopted son of Atlanta, Mr. Aaron was part of the fabric that helped place Atlanta on the world stage. Our gratitude, thoughts and prayers are with the Aaron family.
While the world knew him as ‘Hammering Hank Aaron’ because of his incredible, record-setting baseball career, he was a cornerstone of our village, graciously and freely joining Mrs. Aaron in giving their presence and resources toward making our city a better place. pic.twitter.com/hO7nkIYvVD
— Keisha Lance Bottoms (@KeishaBottoms) January 22, 2021
Fans paid tribute to Aaron at Truist Park say they’ll cherish his legacy. “We just love Hank and what he represents for our city,” said Leslie Tumlin. “He’s a great man. Atlanta’s really gonna miss him, but he’ll be remembered,” Sid Harrell said. “I’m just sad to know what a great ambassador he was for baseball,” said Scott Adams, another fan.MORE NEWS: SunTrust Bank Robber Found With ‘This Is A Robbery Quickly # Go Dawgs!’ Robbery Note Pleads Guilty
They all bid farewell to the legend, who took his final run to the home base in heaven.