CELEBRATING THE LIFE OF WILLIE McCOVEY; Congressional Record Vol. 164, No. 178
(Extensions of Remarks - November 09, 2018)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E1506]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                 CELEBRATING THE LIFE OF WILLIE McCOVEY

                                 ______
                                 

                           HON. NANCY PELOSI

                             of california

                    in the house of representatives

                        Friday, November 9, 2018

  Ms. PELOSI. Mr. Speaker, I rise to honor the extraordinary life and 
legacy of a beloved icon, Willie McCovey, who passed away on October 31 
in the Bay Area.
  Willie McCovey was an indelible part of the fabric of the San 
Francisco Giants and the city of Saint Francis. For more than six 
decades, he gave his heart, soul, and full spirit to the Giants, as a 
player, a mentor for younger players, and a leader in the clubhouse. 
His familiar presence at Candlestick Park and then at AT&T Park even 
decades after his retirement provided a constant source of hope, 
strength, and inspiration for fans of all ages.
  Willie made history as one of just a handful of players in the 
history of the sport to secure a Rookie of the Year Award, a league 
MVP, and multiple All-Star Game MVP Awards. He retired in 1980 with the 
most home runs hit by a left-handed hitter, a record that stood for 
more than thirty years. During his career, Willie led the league in 
home runs three times and in RBIs twice. He retired with 18 grand 
slams, second only to Lou Gehrig, and with 521 home runs and 1,555 RBIs 
hit. His style of play forever changed the game, forcing defenses to 
respond to his intimidating power and strength.
  Willie lived the American Dream, from his rise from humble beginnings 
in the segregated South to his induction to Major League Baseball's 
Hall of Fame. The son of a railroad worker and one of ten children, 
Willie began working at age 12 to support his family, eventually 
dropping out of high school to work full time. By age 17, his 
extraordinary talent and potential had become legendary, and he signed 
his first professional contract, beginning what would be an 
outstanding, record-shattering career.
  Yet, throughout Willie's time on the field, it was not only his 
ferocious power hitting that set him apart, but also his incredible 
generosity, joy, and love for the game. After his retirement, Willie 
continued to give back to his city and his team, and his kindness and 
graciousness earned the devotion of generations of San Franciscans. 
That the San Francisco Giants' annual most inspirational player award 
is named for Willie McCovey is a lasting testament to his contributions 
on and off the field.
  Willie once said, ``I'd like to think that when people think of San 
Francisco, they also think of Willie McCovey.'' What a blessing it is 
to have forged such a legacy. He will be missed by players, fans, and 
San Franciscans of all backgrounds for generations to come, and his 
memory will be cherished every time the Giants drive a home run into 
McCovey Cove.
  May it bring some measure of comfort to Willie's cherished wife 
Estela, his daughter Allison, his grandchildren Raven, Philip, and 
Marissa, his sister Frances, brothers Clauzell and Cleon, Estela's 
daughters Christel Marise and Christel Faye, and all who were fortunate 
enough to know and love Willie, that so many grieve with them and pray 
for them during this sad time.

                          ____________________