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Young cancer patient cheers for Cubs, October 6, 1938

October 6, 2008 |  5:39 am

Nazis bill Czechs for "reparations"; Mayor Fletcher Bowron plans investigation of civic corruption.


Crowds gather outside on 1st Street outside The Times Building to watch World Series results on the newspaper's scoreboard. It looks like they had loudspeakers as well.

By Keith Thursby
Times staff writer

A young fan of the Chicago Cubs hangs on to life as his beloved team tries to defeat the New York Yankees in the 1938 World Series. Movie script or newspaper article?

It's hard not to be a little cynical regarding this United Press story about 14-year-old Johnny English. Maybe he really did exist, propped up with pillows so he could listen to the first game of the series a little more comfortably. Maybe I've just seen too many Disney movies.

"They're gonna win," the boy said, according to the story. "They've just gotta."

These being the Cubs, of course, they didn't. The Yankees took Game 1, 3-1.

[Postscript: Johnny English died Jan. 17, 1939, according to the Chicago Tribune].