This year marks the 75th Anniversary of Lou Gehrig being forced to retire from baseball do to his battle with the neurological disorder ALS. This would be noteworthy if it happened to any baseball player but Gehrig was no ordinary baseball player. The (at-the-time) consecutive game holder, slugger, and quiet leader of 2 New York Yankee dynasties and a quiet, class act that many still consider the greatest first baseman to ever play the game.
Lou Gehrig passed away on June 2, 1941 and less than 2 years later MGM released The Pride of the Yankees directed by Sam Wood and starring Gary Cooper as Gehrig. This is one of the true classics of the baseball movie canon and featured cameos by such noted Yankees as Hall of Famers Babe Ruth and Bill Dickey. The final scene, the classic "Luckiest Man on Earth" speech, is a tearjerker that shows the acting abilities of Gary Cooper while also showing the emotional pull of connecting to your heroes and their lives.
Many baseball organizations and leagues are doing various events this summer to honor Gehrig and contribute to ALS charities, including Major League Baseball. An event that is happening locally, that is if Austin is your local area, that is interesting is that the Round Rock Express will be wearing special occasion pinstripe jerseys with Gehrig's name stitched on back that will be auctioned off during the game to benefit MJ's Army, an Austin based ALS charity. I plan on attending and am not a jersey collector at all but ope to leave the Dell Diamond that night with a pinstriped jersey. More info can be found here.
Below you will find the clip containing Cooper's speech from The Pride of the Yankees.