On this day 50 years ago funeral services were held for the first Cardinals superstar, Rogers Hornsby, in Chicago.
Hornsby died Jan. 5, 1963 of a heart attack. Ironically, the man who so vigilantly protected his batting eye that he refused to watch movies, suffered the affliction while in the hospital to have cataract surgery. After the services, attended by several of his Major League Baseball peers, he was buried near Austin, Texas.
The Rajah led the National League in batting seven times during his stay in St. Louis which lasted from 1915-26 with an encore in 1933. He also led the Senior Circuit in doubles four times and home runs twice and was the National League MVP in 1925. When he wasn't busy being the best hitter in the NL, Hornsby honed his skills as a manager and led the Redbirds to their first World Series championship in his first full season at the helm, 1926.
Hornsby's own funeral isn't the one he was most known for. His mother passed away on Sept. 29, 1926 just as the Cardinals were getting ready to play in the World Series against the Yankees. So the slugger had her funeral and burial delayed until Oct. 13, three days after the Redbirds won the championship.
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