“He gave the term “complete” a new meaning. He made the word “superstar” seem inadequate. He had about him the touch of royalty." This was a quote stated by former commissioner of Major League Baseball, Bowie Kuhn while speaking during Roberto Clemente’s eulogy. When baseball season came around in seventh grade, my coach of the Lakeland Copper Beech Middle School team, Fabrizo Morejon, explained that he wore the number 21 in honor of his childhood hero Roberto Clemente. He seemed such an advocate of this man that it gave me a strong motive to research and to find out who this man really was. When I began to read all about him, I found that his career was not just filled with spectacular baseball achievements, but even more so was all about humanitarianism, and about Clemente’s drive to help others and be a source of pride for his native country. This is something that you don’t see to often today. In a day where baseball players today make tens of million dollars annually and are virtually superstars wherever they go many players cannot be bothered with the well being of others. This instantly became a favorite hero of mine. This speech will take you through the early life and beginning struggles of his career, through his success in the major leagues, ending with his tragic death and legacy left on the world.
So lets go way back, back to the 1930’s in Puerto Rico where Roberto was born.
I. Early life, Getting drafted, Struggles in the majors
A. From the beginning always close to his family
1. Formally Roberto Walker Clemente was born on August 18th, 1934 CLICK in a small town located in Carolina in the north east portion of Puerto Rico 2. Roberto was the youngest of seven children born to Luisa Walker and Melchor Clemente 3. His family was very poor growing up so Roberto happily spent his childhood working part time jobs pitching into the family well being
B. Growing up
1. Roberto was a natural athlete from the time he emerged on the scene...