Updated: October 11, 2005, 11:59 AM ET
Roger Clemens was 9 years old when the man he considers his father had a heart attack. As Clemens recalled years later, his sisters sent him down to the basement, to protect him from what he might see as paramedics arrived. Roger climbed onto a table and looked out the small window from the basement and saw his father being taken away on a stretcher, for the last time.

And Roger recalled having a sense, almost immediately, that he and his siblings had to stick together. For each other. For his mother, Bess.

When she went to her night job, cleaning offices, he and a younger sister sometimes went with her to help. When Bess Clemens wasn't at home, Roger and her other children knew they had to tend to the responsibilities of home, taking care of the house and each other, because their mother was busy, working hard to take care of them. For all that Bess Clemens did for her sons and daughters, Roger had enormous respect for his mother, as well as deep affection.