The sadly premature death of Kirby Puckett brings to mind the opening stanzas of A.E. Housman’s poem “To an athlete dying young”:
THE time you won your town the race
We chaired you through the market-place;
Man and boy stood cheering by,
And home we brought you shoulder-high.
To-day, the road all runners come,
Shoulder-high we bring you home,
And set you at your threshold down,
Townsman of a stiller town.