This day in baseball: Bob Feller enlists

On December 9, 1941, just two days after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Cleveland pitcher Bob Feller enlisted in the United States Navy, becoming the first American professional athlete to volunteer for World War II. Feller was not required to participate in the war, being eligible for deferment because his father was terminally ill, but Feller was determined to join the fight. He would be discharged from the Navy on August 22, 1945, having earned six campaign ribbons and eight battle stars.

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