Can’t Blame Babe Ruth’s Death On Cigars & Booze

Everyone knows what killed Babe Ruth in 1948 at the age of 53 - throat cancer, the by-product of years of smoking too many fat cigars and pounding way too much booze. It was a neat, cautionary tale about how even the greatest athletes can be brought down by their own avarice and over-indulgence.

Babe Ruth, 1945

Well, it turns out that the whole story was a lie. The WESTCHESTER (NY) JOURNAL NEWS reports that Dr. William Maloney spent a year researching Ruth’s case, and while it turns out that he did die of cancer, it wasn’t throat cancer at all, but an extremely rare form of cancer called nasopharyngeal carcinoma. His death wasn’t caused by his love of smokes and booze at all, but just being on the wrong end of unlikely odds.

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Remembering Lou Gehrig’s ‘Luckiest Man’ Speech

Tomorrow is the Fourth of July, as the United States celebrates 232 years of independence from Britain (and what better way to rub in the limeys’ noses than having two American chicks meeting in the Wimbledon women’s final).

Lou Gehrig

But as USA TODAY’S GAME ON points out, July 4th is also the anniversary of one of the most famous sports speeches ever given - Lou Gehrig telling the Yankees faithful how he was “the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”

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