Seth Udinski, FISM News
On July 20, 1976, 42-year-old Henry Aaron blasted the final home run in his brilliant career. He hit his then MLB-record 755th career round-tripper as a member of the Milwaukee Brewers, in the 7th inning of a 6-2 win over the California Angels (now Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim) in old County Stadium in Milwaukee. Aaron started his career two decades earlier in the same city but with a different franchise, the Braves, with whom he spent the majority of his career. He returned to the city in which he began and finished his career on the Brewers after the 1976 season.
A fascinating subplot from that day – Aaron played that game against Bobby Bonds, another power hitter who had made a name for himself as a member of the San Francisco Giants. Bonds did little in the 1976 season, hitting only 10 home runs as a member of the Angels. But 31 years later, his son Barry would break Aaron’s all-time record on a summer night in San Francisco, on August 7, 2007.
Henry Aaron is universally beloved and remembered as not only a great ballplayer, but as a gentle soul and an example of courage and quiet strength under intense pressure. While on his chase to break the all-time record, he faced intense discrimination and racism but consistently responded with grace and class. He passed away earlier this year at the age of 86 on January 22.