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Boston Bids Cousy Farewell

Mar. 17, 1963 - Bob Cousy fought back tears today as Boston paid him the most boisterous, gift-laden goodbye ever accorded an athlete in the city’s history. From an automobile and a message from President Kennedy to a token from 12-year-old cystic fibrosis patient Martha Grady, the presents and accolades were showered on the Boston Celtics star as earsplitting applause rocked Boston Garden. Coach Red Auerbach read a message from President Kennedy which praised Cousy’s performances and his “rare skill and competitive daring.” “I know you will set the same high standards as a coach that you have as a player,” the President’s message said. “It is a pleasure for me to join the sports world in this tribute to you.” Auerbach then added: “I know you people are sorry to see him go, but how do you think I feel?” Cousy, visibly moved, thanked each of the groups which had given him gifts, topped by his general thanks to the fans. Frequently pausing to collect himself, he said: “I’ve been asked many times what I’d miss most about playing. That is easy. The feelings I have leaving my teammates cannot be recorded on paper or in words. I’ll miss no longer sharing the esprit de corps I’ve had as captain of this team.”


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