Don Hooton formed a foundation to stop steroid use in schools after his son, Taylor, committed suicide in July of 2003. He testified before congress moments before McGwire in 2005, but the two never spoke until Monday.
"I answered the phone. He said, 'It's Mark McGwire,' and he was just calling to express his personal condolences or sorrow for what had happened and his behavior and wanted to make sure that we, among a number of other people as it turns out, heard from him directly as opposed to reading it in the newspaper," said Hooton.
On Monday, the 46-year-old retired slugger, who just rejoined his old team the St. Louis Cardinals as batting coach, who also famously refused to admit to cheating when he was hauled before a Congressional committee in 2005, faced his past in emotional interviews with MLB Network’s Bob Costas and The Associated Press after a written statement was made public just hours earlier.
"I wish I had never touched steroids," McGwire said in the statement. "It was foolish and it was a mistake. I truly apologize. Looking back, I wish I had never played during the steroid era."
McGwire said the hardest part about coming clean was breaking the news to his wife, parents, close friends and son, who had all been kept in in the dark.
Hooton accepted McGwire's personal apology and asked if the two could talk again once the dust settles. McGwire has made donations in the past to the Taylor Hooton Foundation, and Hooton hopes he will join him in his fight to stop steroid abuse.
NBCDFW's Daniel Macht and Greg Wilson also contributed to this report.