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Julia Ruth Stevens, Babe Ruth’s last surviving child, dies at 102

The Boston Globe logo The Boston Globe 3/10/2019 By Maddie Kilgannon
a man with a football ball: Julia Ruth Stevens threw out the first pitch at Fenway Park on July 9, 2016 for her 100th birthday. © Getty Images Julia Ruth Stevens threw out the first pitch at Fenway Park on July 9, 2016 for her 100th birthday.

Julia Ruth Stevens, the last surviving child of baseball icon Babe Ruth, died Saturday at the age of 102, her family announced on Facebook Saturday night.

“It’s with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to Julia Ruth Stevens who passed away early in the morning of March 9th after a short illness,” the statement said. “ Julia was a loving wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother who lived a wonderful, full life during the 102 years that she was with us. As the daughter of Babe Ruth, she had many amazing experiences, which she was pleased to share with eager reporters and fans alike.

“Until the very end, she was very proud to call him “Daddy” and she particularly loved recalling events from 1934 when she went on a “round the world” tour with her parents. The tour began with a series of 15 exhibition baseball games played in Japan,” the family said.

Stevens was the eldest of Ruth’s two adopted daughters. She died in her sleep in a nursing home in Henderson, Nevada, Joe Brill, a close family friend, told the Globe Saturday night.

Babe Ruth played for the Red Sox for the first six seasons of his storied career. In 1919, Sox owner Harry Frazee sold his contract to the New York Yankees, setting in motion one of the most famous rivalries in sports history.

Stevens made frequent appearances at baseball events Her last apperance at Fenway Park was on July 9, 2016, when she threw out the first pitch at a Red Sox game to celebrate her 100th birthday.

Related slideshow: Notable sports deaths in 2019 (provided by imagn)

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