LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — April 15 is Jackie Robinson day, which marks Robinson’s 1947 Major League Baseball (MLB) debut for the Brooklyn Dodgers, making him the first black MLB player.

Jackie Robinson Day was established in 2004 for the League to honor his memory.

On this 75th anniversary of Robinson’s debut, special guests and speakers gathered in Times Square to celebrate the iconic player.

“If it wasn’t for him maybe my dad wouldn’t have ever played. Maybe I would have never played. But he went through things that I can’t imagine what he’s gone through, and I don’t have to go through that because the man did it for us,” said Ken Giffery Jr, a former Seattle Mariners outfielder.

Players, managers and umpires all don Robinson’s jersey number 42 on April 15.

The MLB retired Robinson’s jersey number in 1997.