My grandpa's baseball

In Fun

My object is a baseball that was signed by three Yankee stars and given to me by my grandpa.  My grandpa, Richard (Dick) Pawlak, is a first generation American  grew up in Niagara Falls, New York.  He was born in 1939 and lived in a crowded apartment with many relatives.  His mom was born in the US and his father was born in Poland.  He had very strict parents; if he didn’t finish in the top of his class for a test, his mother wouldn’t talk to him for periods as long as a few months.  My grandpa always loved sports especially baseball.  In the late 50s and early 60s, Dick met Yogi Berra through a friend and golfed with him.  When he asked for an autograph, Yogi was happy to comply.  Dick got Moose Stouings’ autograph in the early 60s.  He later met Whitey Ford who was very reluctant to give an autograph because it was at a party at some house but he obliged.  This object is important to me and my family because it represents how my grandfather succeeded and fulfilled the American Dream.  From living in a cramped apartment to becoming a doctor and meeting superstars, he charted his course to success.  I also cherish the memory of my grandfather describing how he got each autograph.  This family relic will always serve as an inspiration to me if you work hard, you can achieve your dreams.

Place(s): Poland, Niagra Falls, New York

– Aidan Pawlak

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant