SAN FRANCISCO—Willie McCovey, the San Francisco Giants star baseman, passed away on Wednesday, October 31, at the age of 80.
McCovey’s career lasted a little over six decades where he earned the “Rookie of the Year” award, a “League MVP” award, and an “All-star MVP” award, which historically has only been awarded to seven players. He is well-known among the baseball world for his quick rise to fame. In his first major league game ,he made 4 for 4 and continued to hit over 521 home runs. In 1980, he retired with the most home runs from a second-hand hitter in the Major League Baseball organization.
He has been influential in the baseball community, spending nearly the last two decades in a Senior Advisory role for the SF Giants. After his retirement, he could still be seen watching the games from his senior suite at AT&T Park.
McCovey leaves behind his wife, Estella, his daughter Allison, and three grandchildren, Raven, Philip and Marissa. Estella McCovery expressed her grief in an interview with ESPN stating that “Every moment he will be terribly missed. He was my best friend and husband. Living life without him will never be the same.”
In recent years, McCovey used a wheelchair due to the gradual dysfunction of his legs. Prior to his passing, the star athlete dealt with ongoing health problems.
Hundreds of fans have posted their condolences on Twitter, with many referring to him by his nickname “Stretch” which he obtained due to his height. The official San Francisco Giants Twitter account tweeted:
“It is with great sadness that we announce that San Francisco Giants Legend and Hall of Fame Willie McCovey passed away peacefully this afternoon at the age of 80 after losing his battle with ongoing health issues.”
According to the SF Giants organization, a public celebration is expected to be held at a later time.