I lost one of my heroes yesterday. He was only days away from his 46th birthday…and just a couple of months away from being re-married. I loved that Kirby represented the Underdog in appearance and Superstar in reality, both with such a huge smile. I will never forget the ‘87 & ’91 World Series the Twins won, and I’ll never forget the spark that Kirby brought to the team, to the Metrodome, to the whole state and to the whole country. Heck, I named my dog after him…because of the spark that he brought to me. The spark that says “You can do it, you can make it! You can be a champion! But more important than winning, it’s the joy and love in your heart and compassion for other people that really matter in life.” A message so similar in nature to what my amazing Grandma Bob used to shower me with.
Ironically, during the ’91 Series Grandma Bob was in the hospital for some heart problems. She was a big Kirby fan. She had a heart-attack during the Series’ day off, only to recover in time to cheer for Kirby and the Twins. She’d watch the games from her hospital bed, Homer-Hanky in hand. Yes, she did get to watch his team pull it out in the end. But, immediately after the Twins won the title, she hung up her Hanky, and said good-bye to us.
I hope this means that Grandma Bob and Kirby Puckett, two of my heroes, finally get a chance to meet.