If you have ever wondered what it would be like to live someone else’s life, then this story is for you.
In 1972, Yankee pitchers and lifelong friends, Mike Kekich and Fritz Peterson, both wondered what it would be like to live the other’s life.
It seems odd that they had these thoughts, considering that their lives seemed to mirror each other. They were both pitchers, they were both married, and they had two children apiece.
It’s one thing to have thoughts, but quite another to act on them. And, yet, this is precisely what happened.
All it took was a barbecue and a dream.
One day, Mike and Fritz attended a neighborhood barbecue gathering.
It was at this barbecue that Mike and Fritz discussed their longing for different lives and decided that they were going to swap their families. Yes, you heard me right. Swap families.
Only a few nights later, Mike moved in with Fritz’s wife and children and Fritz moved in with Mike’s family. New homes, new wives, new children.
In explaining the swap, Kekich stated, “The only way I could justify giving up my daughters was for a love far greater than any I have ever known. By American standards, Susanne and I had a good marriage. But I wanted a great marriage. I was idealistic, I guess.”
While this story is uncommon knowledge among younger generations, it tantalized the nation in 1972. The facts seemed so unrealistic and yet, it happened in a very public way.
As many expected, this story did not end with a “happily ever after” ending for both families.
While Fritz and Susanne Kekich lived a long, happy life together, Mike and Fritz’s former wife lasted less than a year together before divorcing.
This began a feud between Fritz and Mike that would last the rest of their lives.
Photo Credit: DeadBallBaseball.com / David B. Stinson