I never forget Stan Musial. I was 6 years old when my parents and friends took me to the Old Sportsman's Park on May 2, 1954. I did not know about Stan Musial back then. Everything was announced by sound. I was deaf and I was unable to understand what was said. My parents were too busy blabbing, etc. and they always told me, “later, later… and they never told me!” I watched and recorded each ballplayer's numbers carefully so that I could I.D. the players later. After I saw the ballplayer with Number 6 hit the first homerun (over the Pavilion) the Number 6 etched in my head. Later in the game I saw Number 6 hit second, third, fourth and fifth homeruns in a doubleheader (against New York Giants)! Later I learned that his name was Stan Musial. I idolized him. Later I learned that the ballplayer who caught his near-homerun ball was Willie Mays. 2 of his homeruns were hit off Hoyt Wilhelm. I thought the New York Giants were giant ballplayers but I was shocked when I saw that the Giants were as... small as the Cardinals.
He was the most exemplary ballplayer – no drug trouble, no women trouble, no tax trouble, no ejections from ballgames, no arguments with umpires, etc. He was the most humble player.
We used to eat out at his restaurant, Musial & Biggies – first on Chippewa Rd. then on Oakland Blvd. Stan would make rounds to greet customers during the off-season. He was very nice.
At Central Institute for the Deaf, we used to talk about Stan Musial A LOT!
In August 1979 my parents took us to Robert Lewis' farm in Breese, Illinois for all day Luau. I saw a light green Cadillac with license number “3,000” – I knew that Stan Musial was somewhere around. I looked for him and found him. I asked my dad (Dr. Hugh Crowell, M.D.) and Dr. Bray Hawk, M.D. if they would introduce us (me, wife and 2 sons) to him. Sure they did! Stan was the nicest fellow I ever have known. I had a picture taken of all of us and later I went to Stan's business and asked him to autograph 4 duplicate pictures – 1 each for us in family of 4.
I have kept the baseball cards – they are in my bank's safe deposit box. I used to own the baseball glove of the same kind that was used by Stan Musial. I no longer have that glove... I wished I had kept it.
If one were to ask Musial, he would rate the Cardinals' World Championship seasons ahead of any individual accomplishments, which is only right. Still, hitting five home runs in a doubleheader was one of the all-time great feats in baseball history.