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Hank Aaron's cause of death 'natural,' medical examiner says

An investigator with the office confirmed the news with WXIA-TV on Monday.

ATLANTA — The late baseball great Henry "Hammerin' Hank" Aaron's death appears to be natural, according to the Fulton County Medical Examiner's office.

An investigator with the office confirmed the news with 11Alive on Monday, days after the announcement of Aaron's death Friday morning.

There is currently no indication that the COVID-19 vaccine - which he received earlier this month alongside other Atlanta civil rights greats - was a contributing factor in his death, the medical examiner's office told 11Alive over the phone.

In an interview with Ambassador Andrew Young, who also received the shot with Aaron, Young also told 11Alive Aaron "never had any reaction."

"I talked to the fella who was his driver, and I said, 'was hank feeling any discomfort or any problem over the last few days?' and he said, 'no, he wanted to keep his schedule,'" Young recounted.

The longtime "Home Run King" and former Atlanta Brave died in his sleep at age 86, according to the team. 

Aaron endured racist threats with stoic dignity during his pursuit to break the career home run record of Babe Ruth. The Hall of Famer, set a wide array of records during a 23-year career spent mostly with the Milwaukee and Atlanta Braves, including RBIs, extra-base hits and total bases. But he'll be remembered for his 715th swing, the one that knocked off Babe's record.

Aaron finished his career with 755 homers, a mark since broken by Barry Bonds.

Tributes from fans and dignitaries from across Atlanta and the country poured in after news of his death. Those who knew Aaron said he would forever be remembered as a man of kindness with a gentile spirit, whose philanthropic legacy would be just as important as his storied baseball career.

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A private funeral service will be held on Wednesday for Aaron at 1 p.m. The service will be held at Friendship Baptist Church. Aaron will be entombed at South-View Cemetery at 1990 Jonesboro Road SE in Atlanta. The funeral home said that the services will be streamed live. 

Material from the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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