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That year he tied for the league lead in walks, with 104. Maurice Raymond "Hank" Greenberg (born May 4, 1925) is an American business executive and former chairman and chief executive officer of American International Group (AIG), which was the world's 18th largest public company and the largest insurance and financial services corporation in history.. The day, occasionally confused with the intentions of Memorial Day, recognizes and honors veterans of military service and not just those who paid the ultimate price during active duty. It is impossible to square this foreseeable outcome with Spitzer’s claim to be protecting the public from corporate malefactors as the self-promoting “Sherriff of Wall Street.”. I was quite satisfied just to be alive.”.

This doubtless means I am finished with baseball and it would be silly for me to say I do not leave it without a pang.

Greenberg returned to professional baseball until he retired in 1947.

At the time, AIG commanded assets of $800 billion and earned $10 billion annually. Despite the tawdry origins of this trial, and that most of the claims Spitzer alleged have been dismissed over the years, Spitzer’s successors have kept the case alive for 11 years. The challenged transactions, the New York prosecutors concede, had no effect on company earnings or owners’ equity. Greenberg grew up in New York City where he graduated from James Monroe High School.

Hank’s iconic status made his personal dilemmas with religion versus team and ambition versus duty national debates. But a second examination on April 18 in Detroit determined him fit for full military service.

He chose not to play in an important 1934 game because it took place on Yom Kippur, and proved to be an inspiration and role model for Jewish baseball fans across the country. In the courtroom this week are millions of pages of documents that scores of lawyers have spent tens of thousands of hours scouring for more than a decade. In May 1941, Greenberg was the first major league baseball drafted and called-up for WWII service. So Greenberg and Smith have requested the U.S. Supreme Court to review the issue, and their petition is pending, even as the trial is underway in lower Manhattan.

Greenberg’s return helped the Tigers to a come-from-behind American League pennant, clinching it with a grand-slam home run in the final game of the season. I have not been called back, I am going back of my own accord.”. He was the AL home run leader four times and his 58 home runs for the Tigers in 1938 equaled Jimmie Foxx‘s 1932 mark for the most in one season by anyone but Babe Ruth, and tied Foxx for the most home runs between Ruth’s record 60 in 1927 and Roger Maris‘ record 61 in 1961. To persuade him not to retire, Pittsburgh made Greenberg the first baseball player to earn over $100,000 in a season Greenberg played first base for the Pirates for 1947, and was one of the few opposing players to publicly welcome Jackie Robinson to the majors. The pilot saw he wasn’t going to clear the runway, tried to throttle down, but the plane went over on its nose at the end of the field.

In 1938, Greenberg’s 58 home runs was just two shy of Babe Ruth’s record.

At this trial there is thus a distinct air of overkill: a half dozen lawyers on each side of the well in a room stuffed with more than 50 boxes of documents, whose average age is 16 years, and a half dozen reporters in the jury box—there is no jury in this case—typing furiously as two stenographers record every word.

Years ago he settled a federal case arising from exactly the same facts as the New York prosecutors are tenaciously pursuing. On May 7, 1941, the day after hitting two home runs in his farewell appearance, Greenberg was inducted in the Army and reported to Fort Custer at Battle Creek, Michigan, where many troops of the Fifth Division turned out at the train station to welcome the slugging star. In 1947, Greenberg signed a contract with a $30,000 raise to a record $85,000 before being sold to the Pittsburgh Pirates where he played his final MLB season that year. The prosecutors assert that they sustain the case in the name of holding business executives responsible for serious transgressions. The second defect in the case is that the New York State civil law that Spitzer, Cuomo and Schneiderman invoke, the Martin Act of 1921, is both crude and anachronistic. He was 2nd in slugging percentage (.604) and total bases (316), behind Ted Williams. Greenberg is fighting back not simply for himself but for anyone who believes that we should stand for justice, not prosecutorial tyranny. Those monsters went off, one after the other, with clock-work precision.

He had 47 months of military service including service in World War II, all of which took place during his major league career. He had a batting average over .300 in eight seasons, and he was a member of four Tigers World Series teams which won two championships (1935 and 1945). Greenberg, who is a member of the board of the Center for the National Interest, has devoted his life to defending the American freedoms represented by the courtroom, not only as a trained lawyer and corporate titan who built American International Group (AIG), but also through his service in World War II: he was awarded the French Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur in June 2014, the 70th anniversary of D-Day. As for size, the claims concern alleged wrongful increases in insurance reserves of $500 million at a time when AIG boasted reserves of $25 billion.

For example, at one point during cross examination Thursday, the prosecutor presented an internal AIG document reflecting an exchange among executives reporting what yet others had said about a transaction.

So reserves were 1/50 too high. “The miraculous part of it all was that the entire crew escaped,” Greenberg continued. In 1947, Greenberg and the Tigers had a lengthy salary dispute. “I drove out to the field in a jeep with General Blondie Saunders who led the strike, and took my place in the control tower. On February 1, 1942, Sergeant Greenberg re-enlisted, was inducted at Fort Dix, New Jersey, and volunteered for service in the United States Army Air Corps. His faith would often influence, or unfortunately interfere, with his career.

He was deployed to China in 1943, returned back stateside in 1944, and was discharged in 1945. In short, as a visit to the courtroom will attest, this trial is an indecorous display of prosecutorial power that appears calculated more for political aggrandizement than administration of justice. On August 26, 1943, he was involved in a war bonds game that raised $800 million dollars in war bond pledges. While I do not know His Honor personally, from my vantage point in court Thursday I have hope that he will be impartial. Greenberg’s situation is a perfect example. Without the benefit of spring training, Greenberg returned to Detroit’s starting line-up on July 1, 1945, before a crowd of 47,729 and homered against the Athletics in the eighth inning. Hank Greenberg may be most well-known for his baseball career, but he also made history through his faith and military career.

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