"He's the only big egg I have in my basket. He's the only one of four who lived, so I want him to have the best." - Christina
"I don't pretend Lou was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. But he never left the table hungry, and I can say he had
a terrible appetite from the first time he saw daylight. Maybe his clothes were torn, dirty, and rumpled after playing baseball
and football, but he was always clean and neatly dressed when I sent him off to school." - Christina "Mom" Gehrig.
"Gehrig, our first sacker, can certainly field, but he's woefully weak at the bat" - Gehrig's high school newspaper. (Someone
"woefully" sucked his foot a bit later).
"He was the greatest athlete I ever coached. He was almost as big then as he was when he was at the height of his career
with the Yankees, and he had the same team spirit and eagerness to win. It was a pleasure to coach him, for he constantly
wanted to learn and improve his play and when a weakness cropped up in his play he worked at it until he had eradicated it."
- Harry Kane, Gehrig's coach at Commerce High in NYC.
"He was always a great kid in a pinch, and I would have bet my life he was going to slough one this time." - Harry Kane,
Gehrig's high school coach, on Gehrig's incredible grand slam to win the big game.
"He was one of the best punters I ever saw. He never lost the knack of getting the ball away, he had a terrific leg drive
and - which also figured in it - he never lost his enthusiasm." - Bill McKenna, coach at Commerce rival New Rochell High in
NYC, where Gehrig would recreate on the football field during his adult years.
"They stomped all over Lou, but they could never crush his grin or spirit." - Columbia University football teammate.
"The best college player since George Sisler." - New York Times during Gehrig's single, 1923 baseball season at
"We all knew that he was a big league ballplayer in the making. Nobody could miss on him." - Waite Hoyt after seeing Gehrig's
first Yankee batting practice.
"Only Lou's willingness and lack of conceit will make him into a complete ballplayer. That and those muscles are all he
has." - Miller Huggins, Yankee manager when Gehrig joined.
"Gehrig was a hard fellow to know. You didn't just walk in and meet Gehrig." - Lefty Gomez, teammate.
"Lou admired Babe as a ballplayer. You had to, he was superb." - Eleanor Gehrig.
"He walked in the Babe's shadow, as he was to do through all the years that the Babe played in New York. But jealousy of
the Babe was entirely missing from his make-up - jealously of the Babe or, for that matter, of anybody else." - Frank Graham,
reporter and Gehrig biographer.
"Gehrig, for many, respresented the common blue-collar man. Gehrig was everyman." - John Sterling, host of Lou Gehrig's
Yankeeography (YES Network).
"But Gehrig? He'd hammer 'em." - Charlie Gehringer, Detroit second baseman.
"When he went up there to hit he had one purpose - to knock the hell out the ball." - Bill Werber, MLB player 1930-1942.
"There were pitchers in the league who frankly confessed they would rather pitch to Ruth than to [Gehrig]." - Frank Graham,
reporter and Gehrig biographer.
"I had a tougher time with Lou Gehrig than anybody. In fact, he was the toughest hitter for me to pitch to. You couldn't
pitch him over the plate because he'd pull it. And when he hit a ball it's just like a golf ball." - Mel Harder, pitcher 1928-1947
"And when he got knocked down, he took it. Lou treated it like 'Sooner or later you'll have to throw the ball over the
plate, and when you do I'll cream you.' That's the type of guy he was. I loved him." - Tommy Heinrich, teammate.
"Lou was the premier slugger of the '30s." - John Sterling, host of Gehrig's Yankeeography (YES Network).
"What visions burn, what dreams possess him,
Seeker of the night?
The faultless velvet of the diamond,
roar of 80,000 voices
And Gehrig coming to bat..."
- poet Thomas Wolfe, 1934.
"Gehrig was probably a better all-around player by far, but he'd get no special attention even though he'd hit just about
as many home runs." - Charlie Gehringer, Detroit second baseman, comparing Ruth and Gehrig.
"It was strange because there was no particular reason to keep playing without a break, no particular compulsion - except
the fascination to add one more day, one more week, whatever you lost." - Eleanor Gehrig on the streak.
"He was a symbol of indestructibility, a Gibralter in cleats." - Jim Murray, reporter.
"I was very quiet, you know. I never opened my mouth. Lou made me feel like I belonged.... That's the way he was. He was
great." - Frankie Crosetti, shortstop for Yankees in 1932, on Gehrig helping him adjust during his rookie year.
"What a wonderful fellow that Gehrig was! Always hustled. Never gave a moment's trouble. Just went out every day and played
his game and hit the ball." - Joe McCarthy, Yankee Manager during the last half of Gehrig's career.
"On the ball field, he wasn't just dedicated; he was fanatical." - Eleanor Gehrig.
"Fame and wealth touched him lightly and could not mar his simplicity nor the virtues with which he was endowed." - Frank
Graham, reporter and Gehrig biographer.
"G is for Gehrig.
The Pride of the Stadium;
His record pure gold,
His courage, pure radium"
-- Ogden Nash
"I think there's something wrong with him. Physically wrong, I mean. I don't know what it is. But I am satisfied that it
goes far beyond his ball-playing. I have seen ballplayers 'go' overnight, as Gehrig seems to have done. But they were simply
washed up as ballplayers. It's something deeper than that in this case, though. I have watched him closely and this is what
I have seen: I have seen him time a ball perfectly, swing on it as hard as he can, meet it squarely - and drive a soft, looping
fly over the infield.... He is meeting the ball, time after time, and it isn't going anywhere." - James M. Kahn, New York
Sun writer, in 1938 as Gehrig fell into a horrible slump.
"[The public] had marveled for thirteen years at his sublime strength; now they were marveling at his stunning weakness."
- Eleanor Gehrig on Gehrig's progressing, yet-to-be-diagnosed ALS affecting his play.
"It took them 15 years to get [him] out of the game. Sometimes I'm out of there in 15 minutes." - Lefty Gomez, teammate
and friend to Gehrig, May 2, 1939, the day Gehrig stopped at 2,130.
"I knew there was something seriously wrong with him. I didn't know what it was, but I knew it was serious. We were in
the room one day a few weeks ago, and Lou stumbled as he walked across the floor. I was reading a paper and looked up to see
what he had stumbled over, but there was nothing there. I was going to ask him what had happened, but he had a strange look
on his face and I didn't say anything." - Bill Dickey, teammate and best friend, after Gehrig's diagnosis.
"Lou was besieged with fears and doubts about his own life. He had the girl of his dreams, and he had a life of his own.
And he also had a premonition of his own - that it couldn't last, that it was a tantalizing trick of some kind, never really
meant to be. When they gave him the news at Mayo, he must have thought, 'Christ, here it comes.'" - Eleanor Gehrig.
"We've been to the wars together;
We took our foes as they came;
And always you were the leader,
And ever you
played the game.
Idol of cheering millions;
Records are yours by sheaves;
Iron of frame they hailed you,
you with laurel leaves.
But higher than that we hold you,
We who have known you best;
Knowing the way you came through
Let this be a silent token
Of lasting friendship's gleam
And all that we've left unspoken.
of the Yankee team"
- Sports writer John Kieran's poem inscribed on a silver trophy presented to Gehrig during his retirement
"I never knew how someone dying could say he was the luckiest man in the world. But now I understand." - Mickey Mantle
in his farewell address, 1969.
"He never did say very much about himself. He didn't fell sorry about himself. And it certainly was a very, very sad day
for all of us." - Joe DiMaggio on Gehrig's farewell address.
"He was not a natural crowd pleaser. But just as his consistently fine ball-playing, day after day, wore down the opposition
and steadily drove him upward to a place among the greatest players of all time, so did his fine qualities, his character
and his courage in the face of adversity, earn him a place in the affections of the public. When he retired from baseball
he did so with the esteem and the sympathy of the whole country." - James M. Kahn, New York Sun writer, in memoriam.
"He died as he had lived. Bravely, quietly." - Frank Graham, reporter and Gehrig biographer.
"I would not have traded two minutes of joy and the grief with that man for two decades of anything with another." - Eleanor
"Lou Gehrig was my hero. He set a real example for me." - (former) Pres. George Bush.
"Tonight I stand here overwhelmed as my name is linked with the great and courageous Lou Gehrig. I know that if Lou Gehrig
is looking down on tonight's activities, he isn't concerned about someone playing one more consecutive game than he did. Instead
he's viewing tonight as just another example of what is good and right about the great American game." - Cal Ripken, Jr.,
Baltimore Orioles, address to crowd in Camden Yards the night he broke the consecutive games played record. The crowd began
to chant, "Lou, Lou."
"The name Gehrig, there's nothing that will ever be negatively associated with that name." - Curt Schilling, Arizona Diamondbacks
pitcher and huge Lou Gehrig fan, on why he named his son Gehrig.