U.S. Navy Honors Veterans Enshrined In Cooperstown
It's one thing to be so good at baseball, that the player is enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. It's another thing, when that same player faced the challenge of serving in the United States military during wartime. The U.S. Navy decided those players were special.
On Saturday, the U.S. Navy honored those exceptional Hall of Fame players, with a ship named for the small baseball town in upstate New York, which is home to baseball's landmark museum.
According to AP News, U.S. Navy commissioned the USS Cooperstown to honor 70 Major League Baseball Hall of Fame players who served in the United States military during wartime. Hall of Famers Joe Torre and Johnny Bench took part in the ceremony.
The USS Cooperstown is a littoral combat ship. According to the U.S. Navy, a "Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) is a fast, agile, mission-focused platform designed to operate in near-shore environments, winning against 21st-century coastal threats." The AP said that the 70 players honored served during conflicts from the Civil War through the Korean War. The list of names include true baseball legends; Ty Cobb (Army, WWI); Joe DiMaggio and Jackie Robinson (Army, WWII); Ted Williams (Marines, WWII and Korea); and Willie Mays (Army, Korea).
Hall of Fame player and World Champion New York Yankees' skipper, Joe Torre said in his speech, “It is critical that we honor the legacy of these Hall of Famers, not just for what they did on the field, but for what they sacrificed and what they accomplished off the field. Their legacy lives on with the USS Cooperstown and with the sailors here today and in the years to come.” This is truly an appropriate honor for a special group of veterans.