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Atlanta Braves chairman Terry McGuirk said Aaron "set the home run record the old fashioned way."

attending included Ralph Garr, Phil Niekro, Marty Perez and Ron Reed.

The outfield grass had a huge 715 painted on it, and fans, all wearing Aaron No. 44 jerseys, gathered there carrying baseball shaped signs numbered 1 through 715.

colors, including another native Mobilian. Former Georgia football coach and athletic director Vince Dooley presented Aaron with a Bulldogs jersey.

Hank Aaron hailed as baseball's true home run king

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Selig called Aaron's 715th homer "the most famous and treasured record in American sports," and he hailed Aaron as "the living embodiment of the American spirit. . Baseball is forever our national pastime because of people like Henry Aaron."

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Even baseball commissioner Bud Selig didn't speak up for the in the books record holder. Talking with reporters after the festivities, The Associated Press reported Selig responded when asked about Aaron being called the true home run king: "I'm always in a sensitive spot there. But I've said that myself, and I'll just leave it at that."

Converse For Boys High Top

Converse For Boys High Top

The Atlanta uniforms probably looked familiar to the returning players. The 2014 Braves wore Converse For Boys High Top white and blue uniforms Converse High Heels For Kids

modeled on their 1970s attire. The Atlanta uniforms will carry a 40th anniversary patch on their sleeves throughout the season.

Aaron's team, the Atlanta Braves, commemorated the achievement on Tuesday night before they played their first home game of the 2014 season at Turner Field. And while Aaron's career record of 755 home runs was surpassed by Barry Bonds in 2007, either by assertion or implication, the speakers on Tuesday night said the San Francisco Giants slugger had no claim on the record because of his association with performance enhancing drugs.

Other Atlanta area teams sent representatives bearing Aaron jerseys in their Converse Classic Shoes

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Downing also was on hand and threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Some of Aaron's teammates returned, too, including Dusty Baker, who was in the on deck circle when Aaron hit the record breaking homer, and reliever Tom House, who caught the home run in the Atlanta bullpen behind the left field fence. Other former Braves Converse Chucks White

Converse For Boys High Top

Converse For Boys High Top

Converse For Boys High Top

Converse For Boys High Top

That was the message during the 40th anniversary celebration of Hank Aaron's 715th home run, the four bagger that broke baseball's seemingly insurmountable career record that Babe Ruth had held for 53 years before the Mobile native lifted a pitch from the Los Angeles Dodgers' Al Downing over the left field fence at Atlanta Fulton County Stadium on Aug. 8, 1974.

Retired Braves broadcaster Pete Van Wieren said Aaron is "still recognized as baseball's true home run king."

"You will always be the home run king of all time," he said.

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Using a walker, Aaron, 80, attended the event, even though he had partial left hip replacement surgery after being injured in a fall on ice in February. Aaron thanked the 47,144 fans "for all your kindness all these many years."

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