Profiles of Valor
Theodore “Ted” Williams was born in San Diego, in August 1918. Williams grew up loving the game and devoted his free time to the diamond.
After graduation, Williams played two seasons with the San Diego and Minneapolis minor league teams, before being called up to the Boston Red Sox’ lineup in 1939. Williams’ outstanding high batting averages soon launched him into a prominent nineteen-year career with the Red Sox. In 1941, Williams became the last player with a season average of .400, finishing with a .406. Williams finished his phenomenal 1942 season with 36 home runs and .356 batting average, earning him the American League Triple Crown.
In November, after being denied a deferment on the basis for being his family’s sole supporter, Williams enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, serving as a Navy flyer until 1946.
After his return, Williams continued to thrive as a Red Sox. In his first season back, Williams led Boston to win the American League pennant and collected his first MVP award. Williams won his second Triple Crown in 1947 and his second MVP award in 1949.
Williams was called-up again to serve in Korea, flying combat missions for the Marines and missed the majority of the 1952 and 1953 seasons. In February 1953, he had to crash-land his Navy F9F Panther jet following a mission in Korea.
Williams returned in 1954 and spent the next the six seasons with Boston before retiring after the 1960 season, finishing the season with .316 and 29 home runs. His 19 years spent in the League resulted in nineteen All- Star Selections, two Triple Crowns, two MVP awards, six AL Batting Champion titles, four AL Home Run Leader titles, and an induction into the 1966 Hall of Fame. Ted Williams finished his career with .344 average, 521 home runs, 2,021 walks and an 1,839 RBI. After playing, he served as Manager for the Washington Senators/Texas Rangers from 1969-72, winning American League Manager of the Year in 1969.