David Ortiz, an MLB All Star MVP, will live in the history books of baseball and in the hearts of the people of Boston for decades to come. When he was shot on June 9th 2019 and nearly died as a result, all baseball fans were shocked and concerned. When one Boston fan was asked about Ortiz’s impact on his life, he commented: “He is part of us. He helped us break the curse in 2004.” David Ortiz played with the Boston Red Sox for 14 seasons, which included 3 World Series championships. The first win came in 2004, and it was the Boston Red Sox’s first World Series win in 86 years.
After Ortiz was shot, he was rushed to a hospital in the Dominican Republic in critical condition, where he received an emergency surgery. The Boston Red Sox Association sent representatives to aid in his recovery. Ortiz was then flown home to Boston, where he was treated at Massachusetts General Hospital and later released in July. He spent six weeks on machines and while reflecting on this ordeal he stated: “You don’t know the value of it until you face the situation.”
As a celebrity in Boston, David Ortiz has spent much of this century being a staple in the culture of Boston. In 2013 following the horrific Boston marathon bombing, David Ortiz, affectionately known as Big Papi, stood as a symbol of hope. Former President Barack Obama said of this: “David Ortiz’s spirit and resolve helped us all begin to heal from the Boston Marathon bombing.” David Ortiz has also been a charitable figure, and has visited many hospital patients during and after his career in baseball. After his time in the hospital, he understands the value of these visits and stated: “Now I understand how important that is for a patient.”
See Ortiz talk more about his recovery here:
Since the accident and recovery, David Ortiz has been welcomed back into his life as a star of Boston, starting with throwing the first pitch out at a Boston Red Sox v. New York Yankees game on September 9, 2019. He was welcomed onto the field with a rousing standing ovation and thanked the fans and players of Boston and beyond for their love and prayers.
Beyond his appearance when throwing the first pitch, Ortiz has appeared in commercials for Dunkin Donuts and recently appeared in a Boston-based Super Bowl ad for Hyundai. In his personal life, in August 2019, David Ortiz helped his middle child, daughter Alex, move into her dorm room at Berklee College of Music.
David Ortiz continues to be both a supportive father, loving husband, and adored figure of Boston. He does plan to return to his native country of the Dominican Republic, but with a much more cautious and careful attitude than ever before. His recovery continues, but he remains optimistic and courageous, something he has always been.