FARGO-Before national political commentator Ed Schultz came back to Fargo on Monday for the Roger Maris Celebrity Golf Tournament, he took a crew from his cable TV show to Yankee Stadium and asked the people their thoughts on Roger Maris. (Click link for video)

The general result: the 61 in ‘61 home run king has stood the test of time.

“A tremendous amount of respect, almost a renewed respect for Roger Maris being what baseball has gone through,” said Schultz, host of “The Ed Show” on MSNBC. “And all demographics, too. They knew who Roger Maris was.”

The person who knew him the best, his widow Pat Maris, said Monday it’s not hard to maintain the memory of Roger because his name consistently gets brought up in some way, shape or form. She still hears of children being named after Roger.

The connection, mainly, is through the New York Yankees. The club has maintained a good relationship with the family over the years. For instance, Pat Maris said she gets an invitation to the Old Timers’ Day every year, an event that recently completed its 69th year.

“Once you’re a Yankee fan, you’re always a Yankee fan,” she said. “The (fans) come up and they’ve been told about him.”

The most satisfying is probably the kids that continue to latch on to the Maris legacy. Part of that, Pat Maris said, is the movie “*61” that continues to be an attraction to baseball fans of all ages.

“I still get letters from kids who had seen the movie,” she said. “There are Roger Maris fans who are 10 or 12 years old, and that’s kind of neat.”

Pat Maris said the tournament, which concluded its 32nd year on Monday, will continue as long as the fundraising is successful for beneficiaries Hospice of the Red River Valley, Sanford Roger Maris Cancer Center and Fargo Shanley High School.

“That’s what it’s all about, as long as we can still do that,” she said. “Hopefully, we all can still keep coming up. It’s been close to all of our hearts because of Roger starting this. And when you’re involved with cancer and Shanley, I think it feels like a part of our family and this is something (the family) wants to do, so we’ll take the time to come.”

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