It is with great sadness that we learned late last night about the passing of our good friend Mr. Class, Mr. Cub, Mr. Sunshine, Mr. Ernie Banks. He was and will remain a legendary baseball player, friend, husband, veteran, chicagoan, patriot, Cub, and the list goes on with no particular order in which he was great at being all of those things.
Never stingy with a laugh or a smile, Ernie would light up every room and brighten everyone’s spirits. One could even say the Cubs still have the feeling and aura of the “friendly confines” because for 19 years and every year since Ernie set the tone at what it meant to be a “Cub.”
While Ernie’s accomplishments on the field are legendary and many say he revolutionized the shortstop position in baseball, we think it’s even more important that those who remember Ernie look back and remember that Ernie was so much more than baseball. Never concerned with superstardom no matter how big his star shined, particularly on the north side of Chicago, Ernie led by example every day of his life.
To quote Ernie, “Awards mean a lot, but they don’t say it all. The people in baseball mean more to me than statistics.” Ernie also said, “Loyalty and friendship, which is to me the same, created all the wealth that I’ve ever thought I’d have.” I think those two quotes alone say an awful lot about the man.
We’ll miss him terribly and so it is with the greatest honor that we say…