Major League Baseball great and Hall of Famer Lou Gehrig started as a first baseman for the New York Yankees on June 2, 1925. He died on June 2, 1941, at the young age of 37 from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) – also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
MLB is starting an annual tradition of observing Lou Gehrig Day on June 2 to raise awareness of ALS and those afflicted with the debilitating disease that affects the nervous system. Through its American Legion Baseball program, The American Legion is following suit with MLB as an opportunity to bring greater awareness to the connection of ALS and military service.
American Legion Resolution No. 6 strongly encourages “every American Legion Baseball team to observe a moment of silence before their game(s) each year on June 2 in memory of Major League Baseball’s great Lou Gehrig and all veterans who suffer or have died from ALS.” In 2008, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) established ALS as a presumptive military service-connected disease. This allows veterans with ALS to be eligible for service-connected benefits.
Resolution No. 6 was adopted Wednesday, May 5, by the National Executive Committee during The American Legion’s virtual Spring Meetings.