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2009 SAD/TRAGIC NEWS/DEATHS/MEMORIALSabout 2009 deaths of those involved in NASCAR main three divisions or major auto racing series


  • Sad News – D.J. Richardson – service: Richard Childress Racing pit crew member Donald “D.J.” Richardson, Jr., passed away December 25 in a Massachusetts hospital from complications of the H1N1 virus. He was 37. Richardson, of Leominster, Mass., contracted the H1N1 virus over the Thanksgiving holiday. He was admitted to Health Alliance Hospital in Leominster for evaluation, where it was determined he was suffering from acute respiratory distress syndrome. “All of us at RCR are saddened by D.J.’s passing,” said Richard Childress, president and CEO of Richard Childress Racing. “D.J. was a gifted tire changer, one of the greatest team players in the business and a valued member of the RCR family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.” Richardson joined RCR in July 2009 and finished the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season as the rear-tire changer for the #29 Shell-Pennzoil Chevy team. He began his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career with Andy Petree Racing in 1999. He has also worked for Penske Racing, Hendrick Motorsports and Braun Racing. “I am shocked and saddened by the tragic loss of our friend and teammate,” said Matt Clark, director of human performance and leadership development of Richard Childress Racing. “Anyone who knew D.J. realized that below the tough exterior was a caring father, friend and teammate. He had a huge heart and would do anything to help someone in need. D.J. loved changing tires and was recognized as one of the top pit athletes at the position. I want to extend my condolences to his family and friends.” Details of memorial services in Massachusetts and North Carolina are pending and will be made available as soon as possible.(RCR)
    sites a couple sites were set up for Richardson, some notes can be left on the facebook group: Get Well DJ-Updates and a website was setup for Richardson at
    Arrangements: Viewing is scheduled for Tuesday, December 29th at Sailas F Richardson and Son Funeral home from 4:00-8:00 pm/et. 106 West Street, Leominster, MA 01453 (978) 534-9137. The Funeral is scheduled for Wednesday, December 30th at St. Marks Church, 60 West Street, Leominster MA 01453 at 11:00am/et. A memorial service is planned for the future, details posted when known.(12-27-2009)
    North Carolina Memorial Service: A memorial service is scheduled in North Carolina for DJ Richardson on Saturday, January 9th at 3:00pm/et. Grace Covenant Church, 17301 Statesville Road [Hwy 21], Cornelius, NC 28031 [Located between I-77 exits 25 & 28 – next to Home Depot]
    Grace Covenant is only hosting the memorial but is not responsible for the planning of the event [please do not call]. Members of the NASCAR community are asked to wear “race day” crew shirts if possible (past or present). DJ was not a suit & tie guy, so it’s ok to come like you are heading to the track (black jeans & crew shirt). It will be awesome for the family to see all of the NASCAR support.(1-1-2009)
  • Sad News – Earl Sadler: Earl H. Sadler Jr., Age 87 of Nashville, TN passed away on December 24, 2009. Sadler is survived by his wife, Vera Goodwin Sadler; son, Chester (Check) Sadler; grandchildren, Michelle S. Mobley, Earl Harlin Sadler III, Chris Sadler, Ashleigh S. Sharp, Tara S. Janecki, Cara Sadler; great-grandchildren, Taylor & Brennon Mobley; Coleman, Caroline, Clay, & Nathan Sadler; Carson & Alexann Sharp. He had numerous nieces & nephews. Mr. Sadler was a Veteran of WWII with the U.S. Air Force & was the President of Sadler Brothers Trucking & Leasing Co. Mr. Sadler was a NASCAR Car owner, #95 [99 Cup races with two top fives, drivers include Sterling Marlin, Davey Allison and Jeremy Mayfield], a charter member of the Nashville City Club, Lifetime Elks (Franklin, TN), Moose Lodge, Star Route Carriers Asso., Sertoma Club, Founder & President of College Volkswagen in Murfreesboro. He was a philanthropist and helped many people.
    Visitation is scheduled for Sunday, December 27th from 2:00-8:00 pm & Monday from 8:00 am until 8:00 pm at Phillips-Robinson Funeral Home, 2707 Gallatin Rd., Nashville, TN (615) 262-3312. Service is scheduled to be held at the Phillips-Robinson Funeral Home Chapel on Tuesday, Dec. 29th at 1:00 pm with Interment to follow at Spring Hill Cemetery. Honorary Pallbearers, Nathan and Clay Sadler, and the employees of Sadler Brothers Trucking and Leasing. Family and friends to serve as Pallbearers.(Tennessean)(12-27-2009)
  • Sad News – Sharon Hutchens: Sharon L. Hutchens, 45, of Lexington, NC, wife of Stewart Haas Racing Competition Director Bobby Hutchens, passed away Tuesday, December 22, 2009. With her good friend, Michelle Hemric, they formed “The Pit Lizards” to help raise money to fight breast cancer. She was passionate in supporting the local Triad Chapter of the Susan G. Komen “Race for the Cure” for fighting breast cancer. This past May, Sharon was the recipient of the first annual “Survivor of the Year” award presented to her by Hota Kotb after the 2009 Triad Race for the Cure. Sharon was preceded in death by her father, Steve Posti. Surviving is her husband, Robert “Bobby” Ray Hutchens, Jr., two sons, Taylor Lane Loaces a freshman at N.C. State, and Robert “Trey” Hutchens III a 6th grader at North Davidson Middle School. Also surviving are her parents, Annette Mills of High Point and Bill Mills of Thomasville; her sisters, Susan Hollowell of Tampa, Florida and Cathy Graham of Charlotte. A celebration of life service will be conducted at 2:00 pm/et on Saturday, January 2 at Pinedale Christian Church with the Rev. Michael D. Gates officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in her memory to Susan G. Komen, c/o The Pit Lizards, 1106 Burke Street, Winston-Salem, NC 27101 or Camp Cheerio, c/o Sharon Hutchens Memorial, P.O. Box 6258, High Point, NC 27262. Online condolences may be made at
  • Sad News – Gail “Jerry” Douglas: BlackJack Racing is sadden by the loss of one its most dedicated team members. After a gallant three year battle with cancer, Gail “Jerry” Douglas succumbed to his fight on Monday, November 16 2009 at his home in Westby, Wisconsin. Douglas otherwise known as the “Governor” around the ARCA Racing Series garage from 2005-2008 was instrumental in supporting the growth of now NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) driver Dexter Bean. Douglas served as General Manager of BlackJack Racing from 2005-2007 and worked side-by-side with BlackJack Racing owner David Bean. The loss of “Jerry” Douglas is a massive one to the family-owned BlackJack Racing team but the team will continue to race – honoring their fallen hero. “Jerry is gone but he lives in our hearts forever,” said driver Dexter Bean. “Jerry loved racing and especially the people in ARCA. We will miss him greatly but we’ll keep racing hoping to make him proud.” A memorial service is set for Saturday, January 9, 2010 at 11:00am at Westby Coon Prairie Lutheran Church. Online condolences may be offered at Gail “Jerry” Douglas is survived by his wife, Mary (Endle); four children, Teresa (Gary) Last of Cedarburg, Wis., Rhonda (Jerry) Duerst of Cudahy, Wis., Greg (Lisa) Douglas of Muskego,Wis., and Tina (Kip) Lisiecki of Oak Creek, Wis.(BlackJack Racing)(12-4-2009)
  • Sad News – Doris Gammons:
    Mrs. Doris Hinceman Gammons, 80, resident of Archdale, died Friday, November 27, 2009, at High Point Regional Hospital. She was born August 24, 1929, in Rowan County, a daughter of Grady and Jesse Hinceman. Mrs. Gammons had served as Executive Director of the Richard Petty Museum for twenty years.
    Surviving are one son, H. Carter Williams, Jr. of Tulsa, OK. One daughter, Sharon Phillips of Tulsa, OK. Five Grandchildren. Five Great-Grandchildren. Three brothers, Grady Hinceman of Taylorsville, Donnie Hinceman of Granite Quarry and Terry Hinceman of CA. Two sisters, Greta Peeler of Granite Quarry and Jerri Basinger of Salisbury.
    Funeral service will be at 1:30pm/et Sunday at the chapel of Cumby Family Funeral Service in Archdale with Reverend Gary Rutherford officiating. Entombment will follow at Floral Garden Memorial Park Mausoleum.
    Funeral arrangements are by Cumby Family Funeral Service in Archdale. Online condolences may be made at News & Record)(11-29-2009)
  • Sad News – Ernie Gahan: Ernie Gahan, the 1966 NASCAR Modified national champion, passed away Thursday night at his home in Cranberry Isles, Maine at the age of 83. Gahan, originally from Dover, N.H., got his start in auto racing at his hometown track – Dover Speedway – in 1948 after serving more than two years as an Army military policeman in Germany following Word War II. After getting his start at Dover, Gahan competed in the NASCAR Sportsman division until 1965, when he moved over to Modifieds. Gahan compiled 6,560 points during his 1966 run to the title to distance himself from runner-up Bugs Stevens and third place Ray Hendrick. Driving a 1936 Chevrolet coupe, Gahan won 15 of the 71 races he entered that season, but led Hendrick by just 48 points heading into the season finale in Atlanta, Ga. Hendrick was caught up in an early race accident and Gahan crossed the line 10th to earn the crown.
    Gahan made 11 starts in what is now known as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series from 1960-66. He was bestowed the Buddy Shuman Award for outstanding contributions to NASCAR following an incident in which he helped Tiny Lund rescue Marvin Panch from a fiery crash prior to the 1963 Daytona 500.
    Winner of an estimated 300-plus races during his nearly three decades as a racer, Gahan was a member of the inaugural New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame in 1998 and was a 1990 New York State Stock Car Association Hall of Fame inductee. Additionally, he is a member of the Maine Motorsports Hall of Fame and Beach Ridge Motor Speedway Hall of Fame. Gahan was in attendance at the 2007 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Awards Banquet as many of the NASCAR Modified champions gathered to kick-off the celebration of 60 Years of Modified Champions. He was honored for his 1966 title at the 2008 Spring Sizzler at Stafford. “Ernie was part of the Modified legacy that has helped make NASCAR what it is today. He was a great racer and true New England legend,” said Jim Hunter, NASCAR vice president for corporate communications. “On behalf of NASCAR and the France family, our thoughts and prayers go out to Gahan’s family and friends.” Arrangements are pending and will be made available at a later time.(
  • Sad News – Tommy Britt: Thomas “Tommy” E. Britt, age 62, died Tuesday morning, November 17, 2009 at his residence following an illness. Britt was a former press relations rep at Darlington Raceway in the 1980-1990’s. Funeral services will be held at 3:00pm/et on Friday, November 20, 2009 at First Church of God in Darlington, SC. Burial will follow in Grove Hill Cemetery, directed by Belk Funeral Home.
    Born July 25, 1947 in Darlington County, he was the son of the late Ed and Rudell Kinsey Britt. Tommy served in the United States Army 9th Infantry from 1968 until 1970, serving a year in Viet Nam in the Mekong Delta. He was stationed at Ft. Jackson, Ft. Knox, Viet Nam and Ft. Hood. He was awarded the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with three Bronze Stars, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, Army Commendation Medal and Combat Infantry Badge Expert (Rifle). Upon his return to Darlington, he was employed by Perfection America until he became disabled at the age of 27. He attended First Pentecostal Holiness Church in Darlington and Grand Strand Community Church in Surfside. Tommy loved NASCAR, sports and gospel music. He was an avid Clemson fan. He loved spending time with his family and going to the beach. He was a big supporter of St. John’s High School Blue Devil Athletics and Darlington High School Falcons Athletics. On September 30, 2009, he received a Resolution for his loyalty to athletics in Darlington. He is survived by his sister, Cathy (Todd Argeny) Kemmerlin of Darlington, a niece, Angel Kemmerlin of Myrtle Beach, a nephew, Austin Kemmerlin of Darlington and a host of family and friends. Tommy will be missed by everyone, especially by those at the Dairy Bar, Darlington Raceway and Darlington High School. The family will receive friends from 6-8 Thursday night at Belk Funeral Home and other times at his home, 128 Law Plantation Rd. Memorials may be made to McLeod Hospice, PO Box 100551, Florence, SC 29502-0551 (mcleodfound or the Tommy Britt Athletic Scholarship Fund at Darlington High School, c/o Darlington County Bank, 202 Cashua Street, Darlington, SC 29532. Sign the guestbook online at News), plus see a story at the Charlotte Observer by Tom Higgins: Darlington’s tireless Tommy Britt surely in line for honor.(11-18-2009)
  • Sad News – Ken Spikes: Rev. Ken Spikes passed away Monday, November 16 at Phoebe-Putney Memorial Hospital in Albany. Rev. Spikes was the owner/operator of a heavy equipment company. He was a veteran of the United States Air Force and an active member of the Listonia Christian Mission. He is survived by his wife, Miriam Dean Spikes; four daughters and their husbands; six grandchildren and their spouses; and five great-grandchildren, Emma McBryant, Lola McBryant, Bailey McBryant, Brodie McBryant, and Tucker VerSteeg. Spikes ran 16 Cup races from 1964 thru 1970, including the 1967 Daytona 500. Spikes best finish was 10th at Atlanta in 1964, his first start. Service info at
  • Sad News – Bill Pittard: Bill Pittard, a well known and respected member of the racing souvenir community passed away Sunday, November 15th from a lengthy illness at the age of 75. He owned and operated Bill’s Racing Souvenirs out of Graham, NC from the early 70’s until his health faltered over the past decade. Widely known as a pioneer in the business of trackside souvenir sales, he helped usher in the era of respected and licensed traveling souvenir vendors following NASCAR’s top divisions. A lifelong racing enthusiast, he was also retired from AT&T. He is survived by his dear wife Barbara, son Michael, and granddaughters Amber & Nicole. The Visitation & Funeral and are both being held on Wednesday November 18th at Eastlawn Baptist Church, 432 N. Sellars Mill Road, Burlington NC 27217. Visitation will be at Noon and the Funeral will be held directly after at 2:00pm.(11-17-2009)
  • Sad News – Sandra Mae Shano: Sandra Mae Shano, the mother of team transporter drivers Dave (Nationwide 47), Jeff (Sprint Cup #47-Ambrose) and Glen. Shano passed away at home surrounded by family and friends on Thursday night Nov 12, 2009, in Concord, N.C. Originally from Canada, Sandra and her husband Bob were regulars in the racing community from east coast to west coast. They started at Cajon Speedway watching son David drive, and in later years enjoyed life on the road as show car drivers. They, along with their dog Kingsford, spent many hours together on the road and at the ST Motorsports shop in Locust, N.C. When home on the weekends, their house was always filled with family and friends…all there to visit and watch the races. Sandra and Bob were married for 47 years. Independent and feisty, she will be greatly missed. She leaves behind her sons and daughters and 9 grandchildren.(11-13-2009)
  • Sad News – Salvatore Logano: Nineteen year old NASCAR Sprint Cup Series rookie and Middletown, CT native #20-Joey Logano will be racing with a heavy heart this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. Logano’s grandfather, Salvatore Logano, died Friday after a battle with lymphoma. Salvatore Logano was 85. The Portland native and World War II US Navy veteran starred in numerous sports. He was a member of the Portland Sports Hall of Fame and the Connecticut Soccer Hall of Fame. Joey Logano was competing Saturday in the Nationwide Series O’Reilly Challenge and will drive in the Sprint Cup Series Dickies 500 on Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway (Hartford Courant). For the remainder of Salvatore Logano’s obituary and services info, go to the Hartford Courant.(11-7-2009)
  • Sad News – Johnny Fultz: Johnny Fultz, son of Jeff [part-time NNS/ARCA driver] and Angela Fultz, tragically lost his life in an automobile incident (supposedly Friday night/Sat morning). He was 21 years old.(Jeff Fultz site), no other details found.(11-1-2009)
    SERVICES: There will be a viewing on Sunday, November 8, and the funeral will take place on Monday, November 9, at Hodapp Funeral Home in Westchester, Ohio. Address is 8815 Cincinnati-Columbus Road, Weschester, Ohio 45069; 513-777-843. In lieu of flowers a contribution fund has been set up at Bank of America for his baby son: Bank of America, 368 W. Plaza Drive, Mooresville, NC 28117 – Payable to: Jonathan Edward Fultz, Jr. Contribution Fund.(11-3-2009)
  • Sad News – Phil Good: Philip (Phil) Jon Good, age 54, of Ball Ground, passed away on Friday, October 30, 2009 at Northside Hospital Atlanta. He was employed as a Field Service Engineer with Siemen’s for 35 years, a nascar driver and head baseball coach of the 12U East Cobb White Sox. He was a loving husband, father and brother. Funeral services will be held at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 3, 2009, from the Chapel of South Canton Funeral Home. Survivors include his wife, Lorraine Good, Ball Ground; son, Jacob Good, Ball Ground; daughters, Sarah and Rachel Good, Ball Ground; mother, Donita Kennedy, Panama City, FL; brothers, Larry Gear, Flowery Branch, Dr. Michael Good, Marietta; sisters, LaRue King, Kennesaw, Amanda Robinson, Villa Rica; several nieces, nephews and cousins. The family will receive friends from 2:30 until 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the 12U East Cobb White Sox, 200 Longleaf Ct., Canton, GA 30114. South Canton Funeral Home & Chapel, 3147 Marietta Hwy., Canton, GA 30114 (770) 479-3377.(South Canton Funeral Home & Chapel), Good ran in eight Sprint Cup races from 1984-1988 with best finish of 17th at Richmond and Dover in 1985.(Racing References)(11-3-2009)
  • Sad News – “Skimp” Latford SERVICES: Leslie “Skimp” Hart Latford, co-founder of the Grand National Racing Wives Auxiliary which became known as The Women’s Auxiliary of Motorsports Inc. in 2004, died Friday, October 30, 2009, after a brief illness at Union Regional Hospital in Monroe, N.C. She was 74. The wife of the late Bob Latford [NASCAR historian, developed Sprint Cup point system], she was instrumental in the design of the race souvenir programs at Charlotte and Atlanta speedways when her husband oversaw public relations for those facilities in the 1960s and ’70s. A Concord, N.C., resident and a retired school teacher in Cabarrus County, she was described by the couple’s daughter as a “true racing wife”, who was heavily involved in all of the racing community’s activities. A Vermont native, she is survived by her daughter, Elizabeth “Betsy” Latford-York, of Monroe, N.C., and three grandchildren, Chad Latford-York, Trent Latford-York, and Kendal Elizabeth Latford-York, all of Monroe. Service arrangements are incomplete at this time.(10-31-2009)
    SERVICES: The family will receive friends from 7:00 to 8:00pm/et, Tuesday, November 3, at Hartsell Funeral Home in Concord, NC. Services will be held at 8:00pm/et in the Hartsell Funeral Home Chapel. Memorials may be made to the American Lung Association of NC, 3801 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 190, Raleigh, NC 27607. Hartsell Funeral Home-Concord will be serving the Latford family.(Charlotte Observer)(11-1-2009)
  • Sad News – Buzz Woodward: Benton H. “Buzz” Woodward Jr., 79, of South Coatesville, PA, died on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2009, at his farm, which has been in the family since 1850. Buzz was the husband of Mary Brown Woodward, with whom he shared 49 years of marriage on Oct. 10. He worked on the family dairy farm and started an auto repair shop. In 1965, he started Woodward’s Towing, which he operated until his death. Buzz’s passion was auto racing and he was a member of NASCAR and the Pen-Mar Racing Club. He built and competed in his own car in 13 Sprint Cup Series events during his career, earning five top-10s. Woodward’s debut came during the 1956 season, when he competed at Langhorne. Starting 19th in the field of 41, he emerged with a 16th-place finish. He had a solo appearance during the 1957 season at Syracuse, starting 17th out of 24; he wound up eighth. During the nine-race schedule of the 1958 season, he finished 40th in the year-end standings. After finishing 24th during his season opener at Daytona Beach, he finished no worse than 16th during the rest of the year and only had one DNF. During his one race of the 1959 season in a field of 25 at Reading, he finished with a career-best fifth place. His final career race in 1961 at Norwood earned him a seventh-place showing. Surviving him, in addition to his wife, Mary, is a daughter, Rebecca Jane Woodward; a stepson, Emidio Tranquillo; a sister, Jean Herr; two granddaughters, Tiffany Meece and Kimberly Hulse; three great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews; and a lifelong friend, Harry Johnston. In his memory, contributions may be made to the Chester County Association for the Blind, 71 S. First Ave., Coatesville, PA 19320; or Neighborhood Hospice, 795 E. Marshall St., West Chester, PA 19380. Service info and online condolences at Local News)(10-30-2009)
  • Sad News: Dick Thompson: ARRANGEMENTS: Dick Thompson, a pioneer of NASCAR public relations, died Oct. 28, 2009. He was 74. Thompson was the first public relations director at Martinsville Speedway and was only the second full-time public relations representative in NASCAR. H. Clay Earles, Campbell’s grandfather and founder of Martinsville Speedway, hired Thompson in 1966. Thompson had previously been a racing reporter for the Roanoke (Va.) Times. He immediately set to work to put Martinsville on the racing map and quickly did so, using every strategy and gimmick possible to draw attention to the famed half-mile track. He was extremely successful, helping Earles guide the track into the new era of NASCAR racing. Thompson retired in January 2005 after nearly 40 years of service.(National Motorsports Press Association)(10-28-2009)
    ARRANGEMENTS: The funeral service for Dick Thompson will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, October 30, 2009 at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church in Martinsville, VA, with Pastor Kathy Gochenour officiating. Burial will be at Roselawn Burial Park in Martinsville. The family will receive friends on Thursday evening at Norris Funeral Services, from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and other times at the home. Online condolences may be made at
  • Sad News – Vic Irvan: Vic Irvan, President and Co-Owner of Irvan-Smith, Inc. and father of former NASCAR driver Ernie Irvan, lost his battle with stomach cancer on Sunday night [Oct 25th]. Irvan is survived by wife Jo Ann Graves Irvan; son Ernie Irvan and daughters Sheryl Bradford and Tracy Smith. Funeral arrangements: Visitation Wed. 10/28/09 from 6:00-8:00 at Wilkinson’s Funeral Home in Concord, NC
    Funeral Thurs. 10/29/09 at 3:00 at Wilkinson’s Funeral Home chapel and graveside at Oakwood Ccemetery in Concord.(10-26-2009)
  • Sad News – John E. Dillen: John E. Dillen, 65, died unexpectedly October 23, 2009. His life revolved around his love of stock car racing [was an part of the #13/#88 ThorSport truck series team]. Preceded in death by parents, Ellis and Dorothy Dillen and mother-in-law, Betty McKinney; he is survived by wife, Tracy; children, Jennifer (Ed) Dickens, Michael and Susan Dillen; grandchildren, Bryce Jonathon and Grace Ann Dickens; father-in-law, Jim McKinney; and all of his extended racing family. Services will be held 1 p.m. Wednesday at the Billow FAIRLAWN Chapel, 85 N. Miller Rd., with Dr. Walter S. Chisholm officiating. Interment at Hillside Memorial Park. Friends may call at the funeral home 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday. Should friends desire, memorials may be made to Lifebanc, 20600 Chagrin Blvd., Cleveland 44122.(Akron Beacon Journal)(10-26-2009)
  • Sad News – John Nicholas Hedlesky: Condolences to Jason Hedlesky, spotter for #99-Edwards, and family on the lost of Jason’s father, John , who passed away on Sunday, Oct. 18, 2009, at home with his family at his side. John was employed by Verizon Telephone Company for more than 20 years. In addition to his wife, Anna, John is survived by two sons, Jason (Nicole) Hedlesky of North Carolina and Jared Wheeler of Clinton; two stepsons, Lee and Mark; two stepdaughters, Cheryl and Michelle; and three sisters. He was preceded in death by a sister. Cremation has taken place. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Hickman Cancer Center. Condolences may be offered to the family at Telegram)(10-24-2009)
  • Sad News – George Alsobrook: George Lunsford Alsobrook, age 75, of Paulding County, passed away Sunday, October 18, 2009. He was born February 23, 1934, in Blue Ridge, GA, and was preceded in death by his father, Gordon Walter Alsobrook, mother, Pauline Alsobrook Thompson, and wife, Mary Alice Cain Alsobrook. Mr. Alsobrook was a U. S. Army veteran of the Korean War. He raced in NASCAR in the late 50’s and early 60’s, racing at Daytona International Speedway and other tracks in the southeast. Mr. Alsobrook was a member of the Bartlett Lodge #134 in Hiram, the Nobility Club and the Shrine Club. He owned and operated Alsobrook Junk Yard for over 50 years, and was a school bus driver for Paulding County School System for 34 years.
    Funeral services will be Wednesday, October 21, 2009, at 3:00 PM, from Clark Funeral Home Chapel, with Reverend Wayne Morris officiating. Interment will follow in Sweetwater Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Yaarab Shrine Hospital Fund, 400 Ponce de Leon Avenue, NE, Atlanta, GA 30308 (404-872-5818). Clark Funeral Home in Hiram, GA, is in charge of arrangements.(10-21-2009)
  • Sad News – Bobby Rowe: Robert “Bobby” Rowe, 64, resident of Memphis, TN, U.S. Vietnam Army Veteran died Thursday at the Memphis Veteran’s Hospital. Visitation 1 to 2 p.m. Monday [10/19], services with Military Honors to follow at 2 p.m. at Peebles West Funeral Chapel at Oakland. Bobby was a former NHRA world record holder who enjoyed spending time with his family and friends [Rowe also worked for NASCAR Owners James Finch and Rick Hendrick in various capacities]. Survivors include children, Jerene Rowe of Memphis and Robert Rowe, Jr. (Jennifer) and granddaughter Brielle of Santa Clara, CA ; his siblings: Jerene Sykes of Hickory Withe; Tina Dugan of Memphis and Doug Rowe of Cordova. He was preceded in death by his parents Floyd D. Rowe Jr. , Ruth Rowe Mckenzie and brother Terry Rowe, all of Memphis. Peebles Fayette County Funeral Homes & Crematory West Chapel—Oakland, TN 901-465-3535.(Memphis Commercial Appeal)(10-18-2009)
  • Sad News – ‘Big Jim’ Makar: Jim Makar passed away Tuesday, October 13th. ‘Big Jim’ is the father of Jimmy Makar, 2000 Sprint Cup Champion Crew Chief [Bobby Labonte at Joe Gibbs Racing where Jimmy still works] and one-time landlord for Jayski [in 2004]. Makar also owned cars that raced in nine then Winston Cup races in 1977-1978, including Morgan Shepherd, who posted a finish of 10th at Dover in May 1977. Condolences to family and friends and wife Marilyn.(10-14-2009)
    MORE: Dmytro Makar Jr., 76, known as “James”, passed away on Tuesday, October 13th 2009 at Mercy Hospital in Charlotte, NC. Dmytro was born in Hanover Township. He grew up in Whippany & lived in Cedar Knolls for 30 years before moving to Mooresville, N.C. in 1987. Dmytro served in the United States Navy on the USS Midway Aircraft Carrier during the Korean War from 3/2/1951 thru 12/24/1953. Dmytro was a Truck Driver for Jockey Clothing Company in North Carolina for 15 years before retiring in 2006. Prior to that, he worked at the Whippany Paper Board for 20 years. Dmytro was a Member and Life Member of the Cedar Knolls Fire Department where he was Past Chief. He was the First Fire Inspector of Hanover Township and was past Inspector & past Captain of the Cedar Knolls First Aid Squad. James was a Life Member of the N.J. State Firemen’s Association and member of the N.J. Fire Chief’s Association. Dmytro was a member of the American Legion Post 155 and the VFW Post 5351, both in Whippany.
    He owned his own NASCAR Racing Car in Cedar Knolls for 3 years as well as being an avid Fisherman. Dmytro is pre-deceased by his brothers George, John and his sister Anna. Survivors include his wife, Marilyn E. (nee-Myers); his children: James & his wife, Patti of Troutman, N.C., Robert & his wife, Libby of Whippany & Debbie Napolitano of Statesville, N.C. & his 7 grandchildren & 1 great-granddaughter.
    Relatives & friends are invited to attend his Funeral on Monday, October 19th 2009 at 8:30a.m. at the Par-Troy Funeral Home, 95 Parsippany Rd, Parsippany, (973) 887-3235 or visit, with his Funeral Service to follow at 9:30a.m. at Saint John Ukrainian Catholic Church, 60 North Jefferson Rd, Whippany. Entombment: Gate of Heaven Cemetery, East Hanover. Visiting hours are on Sunday from 2-5pm ONLY at the Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers please make donations in his memory to the Cedar Knolls Volunteer Fire Department, P.O. Box 511, Cedar Knolls, NJ 07927.(Daily Record)(10-17-2009)
  • Sad News – Rich Shafer: Richard R. Shafer, of Stockbridge, Ga., was pronounced dead at Erlanger Medical Center in Chattanooga Saturday, Oct. 3 after being airlifted there from Jackson County, Ala., where he was involved in a single-car incident at the Crow Mountain Hill Climb, sanctioned by Sports Car Club of America’s Tennessee Valley Region. He was 66. Witnesses reported that Shafer’s modified Chevrolet Camaro left the road at the third corner of the course that was approximately two miles in length. He was initially conscious at the scene and transported via helicopter. He later succumbed to his injuries. Hill Climbs are one of the oldest forms of motorsports competition in the United States, and are set up on challenging pieces of road closed to public traffic. The course is marked with a start and a finish, with drivers trying to complete the course in the lowest possible time. Shafer was making his second run at the time of the incident.
    Known as “Mr. Cool Shirt,” Shafer was the founder and CEO of Cool Shirt, a company that developed a cooling vest initially for surgeons in the operating room. The company later expanded its line of vests and shirts to cater to racecar drivers, football players, fire/emergency services/hazmat, military and industrial workers. “Rich Shafer was dedicated to making racers better and safer and his passing is a loss for the industry,” SCCA President and CEO Jeff Dahnert said. “Our thoughts are with his family and friends.” Shafer is survived by his wife, Eileen and their two children. Services will be held Sunday, Oct. 11 at 2 p.m. at the Christ Our Hope Lutheran Church, 2165 Highway 138 SW, Riverdale, GA. The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, a donation be made to that church in Shafer’s name. The church has a web site at (SCCA), some of Cool Shirt customers include Dale Jarrett Racing Adventure, part time NASCAR drivers Andy Pilgrim & Johnny O’Connell, Richmond International Raceway, Firefighters as well as the US Military.(10-9-2009)
  • Sad News – Betty Moore: Betty Moore, wife of legendary NASCAR car owner Bud Moore [#15 Ford], passed away Friday morning, Sept. 18. She was 83. Bud Moore won back-to-back NASCAR championships in what is now the Cup series with driver Joe Weatherly in 1962-63. From 1961 through 2000, Moore’s Spartanburg, S.C.-based operation made 959 starts, winning 63 times. Visitation will be held Saturday, Sept. 19, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Floyd’s Greenlawn Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held Sept. 20 at Floyd’s Greenlawn Chapel. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to: Interim Hospice, 775 Spartan Boulevard, Ste. 101, Spartanburg, S.C. 29301; Sertoma, 1912 East Meyer Boulevard, Kansas City, Mo. 64132; Fernwood Baptist Church, 200 Fernwood Drive, Spartanburg, S.C. 29307. More info and guest book at
  • Sad News – Carolyn Carrier: Carolyn Carrier, a devoted wife and mother, lost her year-long battle with cancer early Monday morning [August 31] at her home in Sparta, N.C. A native of Bristol, Tenn., the 60-year-old Carolyn was the daughter of Larry Carrier, who built Bristol International Raceway [now Bristol Motor Speedway] in the early 1960s, and Betty Anderson Carrier. She was preceded in death by her parents. Carolyn spent most of her adult life working in NASCAR, pioneering the way for women in the marketing and public relations fields. She learned the racing business from her father, then continued her motorsports eduction with then Charlotte Motor Speedway President H.A. “Humpy” Wheeler as his executive assistant in the early 1980s. Carolyn later served as Talladega Superspeedway’s marketing director. During the filming of the Tom Cruise movie “Days of Thunder”, Carolyn was NASCAR’s liaison on the movie set. Before retiring from the sport, she handled public relations and marketing for Bobby Allison Motorsports and Brett Bodine Racing.
    Carolyn is survived by her husband, Craig “Stick” Boose; a son, David Freeman and special friend Joy St. Germain of Orlando, Fla.; one brother, Larry Carrier of the Atlanta area; a stepson, Montie Boose and special friend Gloria Stevens of Pilot Mountain, N.C.; a step grandson, Logan Craig Boose, and numerous friends who will deeply miss her.
    Services are Wednesday at Grandview Funeral Home in Sparta, N.C. Visitation will be at 2:00pm/et with services to follow at 3:00pm/et. The Rev. Roy Houser of New Salem Baptist Church will officiate. Burial will follow in New Salem Cemetery in Sparta. In lieu of flowers, Carolyn asked before her death that donations be made to Victory Junction.(9-1-2009)
  • Sad News – Tom Murphy: The employees of Sprint are deeply saddened on the death of Tom Murphy, vice president, Corporate Brand Marketing, who was killed in an automobile accident in Colorado on Friday, August 14, while on vacation with his family. Cheerful and enthusiastic, he was a highly effective marketing advocate for Sprint and a beloved member of Sprint’s NASCAR team. Tom, who was 45, is survived by his wife Jennifer, 42 and sons Ethan, 11, John 8, and Thomas, 6. His son Ethan sustained minor injuries in the accident. He is also survived by a brother, and was preceded in death by his parents. Tom joined Sprint in September 1996 as director of public relations for Sprint PCS. He later became vice president of public relations for Sprint PCS, and then senior vice president – Corporate Communications. Following the merger of Sprint and Nextel, Tom was named vice president for sponsorships in Corporate Brand Marketing. He also served as chairman of the Sprint Foundation. All of those at Sprint who knew and worked with Tom express deepest sympathy and concern for his family.
    NASCAR officials also released a statement lamenting the death: “First, our thoughts and prayers go out to Tom’s family and friends,” said the statement from [Kansas] Speedway President Jeff Boerger. “Tom’s enthusiasm and spirit will be missed not only at Kansas Speedway and in the racing community but by everyone he touched. Tom was a leader in the Kansas City community and this is a devastating loss to us all.”(Kansas City Star)(8-16-2009)
  • Sad News – Thelma Clark: Condolences go out to Denny Hamlin and his family in the passing of his grandma. Thelma Clark, 91, of Tampa, FL passed away Friday, July 31. A Memorial Mass will take place at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church (date to be determined). In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 5100 W. Kennedy Blvd Suite 195, Tampa, FL 33609.(
  • Sad News – Bruce Rossmeyer: Bruce Rossmeyer, one of the nation’s largest Harley-Davidson dealers and a supporter of charitable causes that helped thousands of children, was killed Thursday in a motorcycle crash in Wyoming as he made his way to the Sturgis, S.D., 69th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Rossmeyer is survived by his wife, Sandy, five children and nine grandchildren. Jeans and untucked shirts made up his CEO attire as Rossmeyer personified the fantasy of a millionaire biker. His private jet has flames running down the side like a Harley. His arm bore the signature Harley logo, permanently.
    Rossmeyer helped found, and served on the board of directors for, Camp Boggy Creek, a division of The Hole in the Wall camps; sponsored “Ride for Children,” the camp’s annual charity motorcycle ride; served on the executive committee of Boys & Girls Clubs of Volusia/Flagler Counties; sponsored “Kyle Petty Ride Across America;” served on the board of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward County and the Police Athletic League for the city of Daytona Beach.
    NASCAR driver Kyle Petty formed his own camp for children modeled after Camp Boggy Creek after the death of his son Adam in 2000. Rossmeyer helped him to form Victory Junction in North Carolina after years of taking part in the local ride for children. Rossmeyer continued every year to hold similar fundraising rides for Victory Junction and other charities. Mr. Rossmeyer has been a major sponsor of the “Kyle Petty Ride Across America” which also benefits children’s hospitals they encounter on the trip. In 2008, to commemorate the 60 years of NASCAR, Rossmeyer teamed up with NASCAR to create 60 custom motorcycles, each individually serialized No. 1 through 60. Each motorcycle captures the true essence of NASCAR — a sport that combines design, technology and speed. Motorcycle No. 60 in the series was presented to Petty, who auctioned off the one-of-a-kind motorcycle with proceeds benefiting Victory Junction (a few of these motorcycles are still for sale).
    A celebration of Rossmeyer’s life is scheduled for Tuesday, August 4, 2009 at 11:00am at Christ Presbyterian Church, 1035 W. Granada Blvd., Ormond Beach, FL with Pastor John Cole officiating. His family will also receive friends on Monday August 3, 2009 from 4-9pm at Lohman Funeral Home Ormond. Memorial donations can be made to the Camp Boggy Creek, 30500 Brantley Branch Road, Eustis, FL 32736, or Boys and Girl’s Club of Volusia/Flagler Counties, 101 North Woodland Blvd., Ste 400, Deland, FL 32720-4296. In addition, friends may send condolences to Arrangements are under the careful direction of Lohman Funeral Home Ormond.(info compiled from many sources including Daytona Beach News Journal)(7-31-2009)
  • Sad News – Gloria Ann Summers {Mears]: Gloria Ann Summers [Casey Mears Grandmother] 1926 – 2009 Gloria Ann Summers, 82, of Bakersfield, California residing in Charlotte, NC passed away peacefully in her sleep on July 25, 2009 at Asbury Care Center/Aldersgate enduring a long battle with Alzheimer’s. Mrs. Summers survivors include her son, Gary Summers; daughter, Carol Mears and husband Roger; grandchildren, Casey Mears [driver of the #07 Chevy] and fiancée Trisha Grablander, Zachary Summers; great granddaughter, Samantha Mears; Aunt Betty Marcil; cousin, Ame Marcil and wife Mary (Moe); nieces, Darlene Welles, and Jackie Conrad. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to: Aldersgate UMRC, Inc., 3800 Shamrock Dr., Charlotte, NC 28215 Attn.: Executive Office or to the Jimmie Johnson Foundation.(Bakersfield Californian)(7-30-2009)
  • Sad News – Myrtle Hoots: Myrtle Hoots, 87, mother of NASCAR Managing Event Director, David Hoots passed away on July 25, 2009. Visitation will be held Tuesday, July 28 from 6:00-8:00pm/et at Hayworth-Miller Silas Creek Chapel, 3315 Silas Creek Parkway, Winston-Salem, NC 27103 (phone 336.765.8181) and a Celebration of Life Service will be held on Wednesday, July 29 at 10:00am/et at Konnoak Hills United Methodist Church, 430 Weisner Street, Winston-Salem, NC 27127, (phone 336.788.7423) Memorials may be made to Konnoak Hills United Methodist Church, 430 Weisner Street, Winston-Salem, NC 27127 or to Sunnyside Ministries, 319 Haled Street, Winston-Salem, NC 27127.(7-28-2009)
  • Sad News – John Dicken: John “Pop Pop” Dicken, the father of ARCA RE/MAX Series car owner Jennifer Belmont [wife of ARCA driver Andy, also 12 Cup starts], died Monday morning July 27 at Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, PA. He was 70. John, born January 6, 1939, was a member of the Andy Belmont Racing pit crew for many racing seasons. He will be buried with his “pit crew of the race” award earned from the Kentucky Speedway in 2001.(more info at ARCA Racing)(7-28-2009)
  • Sad News – Gramma Gilly: (aka: Inez M. Gilliland) 87, mother of 1997 Winston West Champion, Butch Gilliland, and NASCAR Sprint Cup driver, [#71 Chevy] David Gilliland passed away on July 16, 2009. She was a great inspiration to those that ever had the privilege to truly know her; she was a remarkable woman, and as a Matriarch of the Gilliland family, she will be greatly missed. Services for Gramma Gilly are on July 25, 2009, at 10:00am at the: Nampa Funeral Home — Yraguen Chapel, 415 12th Ave South, Nampa, Idaho 83651.(208-442-8171)(7-21-2009)
  • Sad News – Lindsay Nava: Lindsay Nava 24, daughter of NASCAR West car owner [#77 team, Andrew Myers driver, part time], Joe Nava, was killed in a car accident early Sunday morning, July 19.(Racing West) Thoughts go out to Joe and his family.
    Services for Lindsay will be held Thursday, July 23rd, 2:00pm at Grace Church – 515 S. Glendora Avenue – Glendora, CA (626-335-4067). In lieu of flowers, etc., a memorial fund has been established in Lindsay’s name. Lindsay Lynnelle Nava Memorial Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 277, Glendora, Calif 91740.(7-20-2009)
  • Sad News – Joan Verlatti: Joan Verlatti, wife of NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Director, Mike Verlatti, passed away Thursday, July 16. The Memorial Service for Joan Verlatti will be held on Tuesday, July 21 at 1 p.m. at Golden Hills Community Church, located at 2401 Shady Willow Lane, Brentwood, CA. Memorial donations, if desired, may be made to ARF: Tony La Russa’s Animal Rescue Foundation, 800.567.1ARF or West/Contra Costa Times)(7-20-2009)
  • Sad News – Charlie Webster: Police in Oxford, ME say a race car driver was killed Wednesday night when he crashed during a race. Police identified the driver as 38-year-old Charles Webster, of Auburn. Webster was racing in the Accelaration Series as a part of Speed Week, leading up to the TD Banknorth 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway on Sunday [Rusty, Kenny and Steven Wallace are scheduled to appear]. Officials say Webster crashed around 7:30pm, and many of his family members were at the track, watching the race. It’s still unclear what caused the crash.(
  • Sad News – Bill Robinson: Longtime sportswriter and columnist Bill Robinson, known in part for his NASCAR coverage, has died. He was 79. Former Atlanta sports editor Jim Minter said Robinson was the writer who nicknamed famed driver Richard Petty “King Petty.” NASCAR vice president Jim Hunter recalled Robinson as a “fun-loving, unique person.” Lafayette Sun editor Michael Hand said Robinson, who died Saturday, had open heart surgery in April and spent some two months in the hospital. His cause of death was not immediately available Monday. Robinson was a retired Atlanta Journal writer living in Chambers County, Alabama. He still wrote columns for the Opelika-Auburn News and Lafayette Sun.(Associated Press /
  • College fund established for Poole’s grandson: Since his passing eight weeks ago, the inspiration of David Poole’s legacy has been quite prevalent. Countless memories have been shared and personal tributes written. In those tributes, it was clear the sport of auto racing held a significant place in David’s heart. But it was also clear his inner-joy came from his two-year-old grandson, Eli. We all find balance and escape in different ways. Poole found his in Eli. With the support of many industry people as well as Katy Poole, David’s wife, a college fund has been established for Eli. The hope here is that Eli will be afforded the opportunity to embark on his own successful career, and – all the while – truly understand how much his PawPaw meant to the NASCAR community. The college fund for Eli is established at the Bank of Stanly in Oakboro, N.C. Donations can be sent to the following address:
    Eli Samuel Ross
    Bank of Stanly
    Attn: Misty Nordan
    P.O. Box 539
    Oakboro, NC 28129
    Phone: 704.485.3435
    (Please make checks payable to “Eli Ross Account” at Bank of Stanly.)
  • St. Louis Race track crash kills 1, hurts 2: Police said Sunday a 47-year-old man was killed and two other injured Saturday night when a race car flipped off the track and slammed into the pit area at St. Francois County Raceway. Police withheld the man’s identity, saying they weren’t sure whether his nearest relatives had been notified. Two others also were injured, including the driver of the race car that lost control.(St Louis Post Dispatch)(6-22-2009)
  • SCCA Driver dies in in wreck: Thomas Thrash Jr., 48, of Houston, Texas, was pronounced dead late Saturday morning at St. Nicholas Hospital (Sheboygan, Wis.). Thrash was involved in a single-car incident Saturday at Road America during the Sports Car Club of America-sanctioned Chicago Region June Sprints event. The cause of death is under investigation. Witnesses reported that Thrash lost control of his E Production class Mazda RX-7 before Turn Eight, with the car entering the gravel trap and coming to rest against the tire wall. A 12-year veteran driver in SCCA competition, Thrash was the 2007 SCCA National Champion in E Production and a two-time Runoffs polesitter. Thrash had qualified his car on the pole position for Saturday afternoon’s race before the incident. “We are deeply saddened to have lost Tom Thrash, a great champion and individual that epitomized the spirit and competition of SCCA racing, and most importantly, a member of our SCCA family,” SCCA President and CEO Jeff Dahnert said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.”(Road America site)
  • Sad News – Carlos Pardo: Driver Carlos Pardo has been killed in a crash during the final laps of a NASCAR Mexico race, organizers said. Pardo was leading the race in the 97th lap when his car was nudged by a competitor from behind and slid sideways into a wall at the entrance to the pit lane at about 200 kph (120 mph) on Sunday. The car disintegrated as a result of the impact. He was removed from the wreckage and sent by helicopter to a hospital. The NASCAR Mexico Web site reported that he died 45 minutes later. Pardo was later declared winner of the race in Pueblo, east of Mexico City. Pardo won the series championship in 2004 and had 10 career victories in 74 races.(Associated Press / USA Today)(6-15-2009)
  • Sad News – Dick May: former NASCAR Cup driver, Dick May, passed away Tuesday. May was the driver of the B29 at Watertown Speedway for many years and a former track champion there before campaigning on the NASCAR circuit from 1970 to 1985 starting 185 races and subbing in many more. May was inducted into the DIRT Hall of Fame two years ago.( More info about May at
    SERVICES: The Family will receive Friends at Cavin-Cook Funeral Home, Mooresville NC during the afternoon and evening of Monday, June 15. Funeral service will be conducted at Cavin-Cook Funeral Home, Mooresville NC at 1:00pm on Tuesday, June 16 followed by a processional to facilities of Performance Instruction & Training (PIT), 156 Byers Creek Rd., Mooresville, NC were Family and Friends will continue an informal celebration of Dick’s life and career until 5:00pm.(6-10-2009)
  • Sad News – Dave Roberts: David W. Roberts, 65, passed away Sunday, May 31, 2009 in Hilliard, FL. David was heavily involved in NASCAR and was Chief Chassis Builder for Rusty Wallace. Survivors include his wife of 46 years, Sherry H. Roberts, two sons, David Roberts and Don Roberts (Marie), one brother, Kenneth Roberts (Judy), and two sisters, Carolyn Boss’e and Gloria Ward (Joe). Funeral services will be held 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, June 3, 2009 in the Chapel of Hardage-Giddens Town and Country Funeral Home, 7242 Normandy Blvd in Jacksonville FL. (904)781-9262. Interment will be at Riverside Memorial Park. The family will receive friends, this evening Tuesday, June 2, 2009 from 6-8 p.m. at the funeral home.(Sign the Guestbook at the Florida Times Union)(6-2-2009)
  • Sad News – Larry Rice: Former USAC Champ and Infy 500 rookie of the year, Larry Rice, died Wednesday in Brownsburg, IN of cancer at age 63, Rice won the 1973 USAC midget title, be a two-time USAC Silver Crown champion (1977, 1981) and win 23 times (15 midgets, 5 dirt, 3 sprint) during his career. See article by Robin Miller at
  • Sad News – Tony Marcis: Anthony “Tony” Marcis Jr., 92, Wausau, died Wednesday, May 13, 2009, at Saint Clare’s Hospital, Weston. Tony owned and operated an auto mechanic shop. Later, he worked at Wausau Papers, Brokaw, until retirement. He enjoyed fishing walleye and trout streams, dancing polkas, hunting, sports and racing. He also enjoyed building race car engines for his sons and grandsons. Survivors include two sons, Donald (Carol) Marcis, Wausau, [Former NASCAR Cup Driver/Owner] Dave (Helen) Marcis, Skyland, N.C.; one daughter, Toni (Paul) Seccomb, Butte, Mont.; six grandchildren, Shawn (Sam) Beam, Arden, N.C., Richard (Koloma) Marcis, Detroit, Mich., William Marcis, Wausau, Robert Marcis, Lexington, N.C., Dylan (Ann) Shaw, Alabama, and Morgan (T.J.) McKenzie, California, nine great-grandchildren, two brothers and three sisters. He was preceded in death by his parents, wife, and two sisters. A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, May 16, 2009, at Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, 1302 Sixth St., Wausau. The Rev. Dr. James Engel will officiate. Entombment will be in the Garden of Eternal Rest Mausoleum at Restlawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Wausau. Friends may call from 11 a.m. Saturday until the time of services all at the Sixth Street funeral home.(Wausau Daily Herald)(5-16-2009)
  • Sad News – Frank Mundy: Frank Mundy, a former NASCAR and AAA competitor in the late 1940 and early ’50s, has died in Atlanta. Mundy, born Francisco Eduardo Menendez, was 91 and is survived by his wife, Mae. Also known by the nickname “Rebel”, which he sometimes signed as a middle name, Mundy competed in more than 50 NASCAR events from 1949 to 1956, earning three wins – at Columbia, S.C., Martinsville, Va., and Mobile, Ala. He also won four poles and recorded 24 top-10 finishes. He was the 1955 champion in the American Automobile Association. Mundy is often remembered for driving a Studebaker, but the Georgia driver was also associated with the powerful Chryslers organization of Mercury Marine owner Carl Kiekhaefer, widely regarded as NASCAR’s first big-spending, mega-team owner. Mundy and Indianapolis 500 figure Tony Bettenhausen drove Keikhaefer’s cars in American Automobile Association races before the multimillionaire turned his attention to NASCAR in the mid-1950s. Mundy, Tim Flock, and Buck Baker were among his drivers in the growing stock car racing series.(Charlotte Observer)(5-15-2009)
  • Sad News: Wayne Patterson: Jimmie Wayne Patterson, 60, of Jetersville, VA was killed in a single-vehicle crash in Nottoway County early Thursday. At 12:42 a.m., Virginia State Police Trooper J.D. Moses was called to the scene at the intersection of Rt. 360 and Rt. 615. Mr. Patterson was driving his 2000 Chevrolet Silverado, traveling westbound on Rt. 360 when it ran off the left side of the road. Mr. Patterson overcorrected, which caused the vehicle to overturn. Mr. Patterson was not wearing a safety belt and was thrown from the pickup truck. He died at the scene. Mr. Patterson was once a driver in the Nationwide (Busch at the time of his racing) Racing Series. During his racing career he ran in a total of 39 races over a span of eight years, from 1982-1990. Mr. Patterson finished in the top five once, and in the top 10 on seven occasions during this time. In his racing career, he received a total of $27,195 earnings and raced at several tracks including Daytona, Richmond, North Wilkesboro, Rockingham, Martinsville and Dover. He also raced in weekly racing series at Southside Speedway and South Boston.(Amelia Bulletin Monitor), Patterson’s car owner during much of his career was Bill Grubb, father of Wayne and Kevin Grubb.(5-14-2009)
  • Former NASCAR Driver Kevin Grubb found dead: Suspended Nationwide Series driver Kevin Grubb was found dead on Wednesday in a Richmond, Va., area hotel. He was 31. Henrico Co. Lt. Richard Cosby said Grubb was discovered at the Alpine Motel just outside of Richmond at 11:30 a.m. The cause of death has not been released pending the notification of next to kin, but Cosby said no foul play was suspected. Grubb was indefinitely suspended by NASCAR on Sept. 11, 2006 after his second violation of NASCAR’s substance abuse policy. Grubb, the younger brother of former NASCAR driver Wayne Grubb, began his Nationwide career in 1997 with four starts for Grubb Motorsports. He ran in 16 Nationwide events for his father’s team in 1998 with a top finish of second at Dover. Grubb drove for Brewco Motorsports from 1999 through 2001, collecting 18 top 10s. After several failed seasons with two other teams he was scheduled to drive for Team Reno Motorsports in 2004, but failed a substance abuse test in March and was suspended. The suspension in 2006 came after Grubb refused to take a drug test following a second-lap crash at Richmond. Failure to take the tests is considered an automatic failed test. The next day Grubb claimed that he declined the test because of a concussion suffered during the accident and offered to take a test at that time. He reportedly claimed no memory of the refusal due to the head injury. Grubb was a native of Mechanicsville, Va., a suburb of Richmond.(ESPN)
    UPDATE: A medical examiner investigating the death of former NASCAR driver Kevin Grubb says Grubb died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. Investigators are expected to release more information on his death in the day ahead.(NBC12 News)(5-7-2009)
  • Poole receives NMPA Spirit Award: David Poole is the first quarter recipient of the National Motorsports Press Association Spirit Award for his efforts to help a family burdened by medical bills. The award comes three days after Poole died of a heart attack. The NMPA Spirit Award is designed to recognize character and achievement in the face of adversity, sportsmanship and contributions to motorsports. Each year, quarterly winners are selected, and an overall winner is determined by a vote of the NMPA membership. The 2009 overall winner will be announced during the NMPA’s annual convention and awards ceremony in January 2010. Also receiving votes were Denny Hamlin and Bristol Motor Speedway. Poole, who wrote for The Charlotte Observer, started the foundation called Pennies for Wessa after writing a story about Wessa Miller in February 2008. Miller, who suffers from spina bifida, gave Dale Earnhardt a penny that he attached to the car’s dashboard before he won the 1998 Daytona 500. After the story, Poole kept in contact with the family, saw their struggles and sought to help them. The program and family gained more attention in March at Bristol when Miller and her family were invited to the track. The NASCAR Foundation held an online auction with proceeds going to Pennies for Wessa. Along with contributions from those in the sport, more than $10,000 was raised.(NMPA PR)(5-2-2009)
  • Teams carrying decal honoring Poole: Several NASCAR Sprint Cup teams are carrying logos honoring the late David Poole this weekend at Richmond International Raceway. The four Hendrick Motosports cars are carrying a logo that has “DCP” for David Carl Poole and is in Carolina blue in honor of his alma mater, the University of North Carolina, in remembrance of the reporter who covered NASCAR for The Charlotte Observer and also hosted a program on Sirius XM Satellite Radio. Stewart-Haas Racing’s cars are also carrying a decal honoring the writer. The logo on the Stewart-Haas cars reads, “In Memory of David Poole 1959-2009” and includes images of a fountain pen and a microphone. Cars for Roush Fenway Racing, Penske Racing and Richard Childress Racing are among others also carrying decals.(Scene Daily)(5-1-2009)
  • Katy Poole scheduled to be on Sirius Radio: On Friday, May 1st, Katy Poole [wife of David] is scheduled to be on Sirius XM Satellite Radio, NASCAR Channel 128 The Morning Drive show with host Mike Bagley at 10:40am/et.(4-30-2009)
  • Poole to be honored on special Sirius Radio Show: On Wednesday, April 29th, Davod Poole’s memory will be honored with a very special tribute show on Sirius XM Satellite Radio, NASCAR Channel 128 from 7:00am tp 11:00am/et. Some folks expected to be on the show include: Current & Former “TMD – The Morning Drive” with Mike Bagley, Marty Snider, Greg Biffle, Mike Helton, Cal Wells, Kurt Busch, Jeff Burton, Shannon Spake, Bruton Smith, David Stremme, Steve Letarte, Kelley Earnhardt Elledge, Jim Hunter, Brian France, Jim Utter, Monte Dutton, Jeff Gordon, Darrell Waltrip, Max Seigel and Juanita Miller (mother of Wessa Miller)(4-29-2009)

  • Sad News – David Poole: David Poole, NASCAR Writer for Charlotte Observer for the last 13 years, passed away today. David was one the first writers to ever help and myself back in 1997. No word on arrangements. Thoughts go out to David’s family.
    From the Charlotte Observer/Thatsracin: Over thousands of backstretches and hundreds of checkered flags, David Poole made himself into more than one of the nation’s leading authorities on NASCAR. He became a part of the sport he loved. “David Poole was as much a fixture in this sport as the actual cars themselves,” driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. said Tuesday. “He was a one-of-a-kind individual and an extremely talented writer.” Poole, who covered racing for the Observer, died of a heart attack Tuesday at his Stanly County home. He was 50. A native of Gastonia, N.C., Poole became the Observer’s NASCAR writer in 1997. He built a national following through and a daily program he hosted on Sirius NASCAR Radio. The National Motorsports Press Association four times named him its writer of the year. He wrote about the sport with the enthusiasm of a fan and the critical eye of a journalist. “He could be controversial from time to time but he always wrote and spoke what he believed,” said Richard Childress, president and CEO Richard Childress Racing. “He didn’t pull any punches with anybody and that’s what people respected about him. He was good for the sport.”
    To honor Poole, Sirius plans to broadcast a tribute Wednesday morning. NASCAR plans a moment of silence before Saturday’s race at Richmond.
    “He was truly one of the nation’s best and he always wrote what he believed,” said Bruton Smith, chairman and CEO of Speedway Motorsports. “Whether you agreed with him or not, he made us all think, and that’s what the best writers do. He cared about what he did and had a passion for his work. It came through in what he wrote every day.”
    In announcing Poole’s death to a hushed newsroom Tuesday afternoon, Observer editor Rick Thames called him “the best in his field, there’s no doubt about that.” Thames said: “David Poole was the fans’ reporter, always covering NASCAR with their sensibilities in mind. Their passions were his passions. Their values, his values. If that occasionally clashed with the powerbrokers of the sport, so be it. David told it like it was. And by doing that, he made the sport richer and more genuine for all who love it.”
    After dramatic weekend crashes at Talledega – one of which sent two spectators to hospitals – Poole criticized the track’s design in a column headlined “Will it take a death for Talladega to change?
    “It seems we’ve decided we can live with that much damage being done to the sport’s customers for ‘good racing,’” he wrote. “How many people have to be listed in ‘guarded’ or ‘critical’ condition before we say that’s too much?”
    Poole graduated from journalism school at UNC Chapel Hill in 1981. He took a job at the Virginian Pilot in Norfolk but was there just two months when he got a call from the Gastonia Gazette, where he eventually became sports editor. In 1989 he left for a newspaper in Palm Beach but returned a year later for a job at the Observer in part to be closer to his family. After taking over the motorsports beat from Tom Higgins a few years later, it didn’t take him long to make his mark. “I’d go in restaurants in Mooresville and people would say, ‘Did you read what Poole wrote today?’” Higgins said. “And I’d say that’s the first thing I read.” Early last year, Poole told the story of Wessa Miller, a Kentucky girl with spina bifida and a passion for Dale Earnhardt. He recounted how in 1998 she met her idol at the Daytona 500, a race Earnhardt had never won. She gave him a lucky penny, which he glued to his dashboard before going on to win his first 500. A few months after he wrote the story, Poole learned that Wessa’s father faced unexpected heart surgery. Poole started an account called “Pennies For Wessa” to help the family through its troubles.
    Guest book: Post your condolences.(4-28-2009)
    Statement from Brian France, NASCAR Chairman and CEO: “The NASCAR community is stunned and saddened by the loss of David Poole. David was as passionate about NASCAR as anyone and had very definitive opinions about the sport. He served the industry, and most importantly the fans, through his reporting and commentary in the Charlotte Observer and Sirius Satellite Radio. Our thoughts and prayers go out to David’s family and friends. He will be missed.”(4-29-2009)
  • David Poole Services: Visitation and Funeral Service Information for David Poole
    Receiving friends on Wed (April 29) from 6:30p-8:30pm/et (or until the last person leaves)
    McLean Funeral Home
    700 South New Hope Rd.
    Gastonia, NC 28054
    (704) 865-3451
    Service on Thursday (April 30) at 1:00pm/et
    Parkwood Baptist Church
    1729 E. Garrison Blvd.
    Gastonia, NC 28054
    (704) 864-3681
    Burial Immediately Following Service Gaston Memorial Park
    1200 S New Hope Rd
    Gastonia, NC 28054
    (704) 865-9521
    In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to:

    David Poole [left] interviewing Ricky Rudd along with Jayski in Las Vegas in 2004

  • Sad News – Pamela Roberts Trivette: Pamela Roberts Trivette, the only child of the late NASCAR legend Glenn “Fireball” Roberts, died Sunday at her home in Rockledge. The cause of death has not been announced. She was 58. Fireball Roberts, of course, is the Apopka native who became one of the first NASCAR superstars, winning 33 races, including the Daytona 500. He died on July 2, 1964, after being badly burned in a crash at Charlotte weeks earlier. Pam, as she was known to the NASCAR community, was active in Daytona Beach-area historical functions, and maintained a Web site dedicated to her father at Motorsports historian Roland Via has a tribute to Pam at the Web site he maintains,, which also has a link to an excellent profile on Pam by Florida Today writer Mark DeCotis, which talks about the book she was writing on her father.(Orlando Sentinel)(4-28-2009)
  • Sad News: Jack McCoy: Jack McCoy, a two-time champion and the winningest driver in the NASCAR Camping World Series West, died Tuesday at the age of 68. McCoy – who won series championships in 1966 and 1973 – registered a record 54 series wins, along with a record 57 career poles in the series. A native of California’s Central Valley, McCoy was well known for the Dodge he drove, which was usually purple in color. He was among the inaugural inductees into the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame in 2002 and was among a list of drivers named to the “NASCAR Camping World Series West All-Time Top-10,” compiled by NASCAR and NASCAR Insider in 2005. While McCoy’s overall racing career spanned from the late 1950s to the early 1990s, he focused primarily on the NASCAR Camping World Series West from 1962 to 1974. In addition to his two series championships, he finished as the runner-up in the final standings of the series on four occasions – 1969, 1970, 1971 and 1974. (NASCAR PR), McCoy ran in 20 Cup races from 1963-1974 with a top finish of 5th at Martinsville in Sept 1973.(4-16-2009)
  • Sad News – Chuck Gaa: Charles ‘Chuck’ Wilson Gaa, 63, passed away at his home in Marshall, N.C. on Saturday, April 4, 2009. Chuck owned GAACO Enterprises in Atlanta and was contracted by Buick and Chevrolet to design and build a series of radically different NASCAR race cars for owners such as Junior Johnson and Travis Carter while serving as GM’s suspension and chassis consultant. Chuck became involved in stock car racing with Jim Welty in USAC while still a teenager and served as chief mechanic for A.J. Foyt’s USAC Championship winning Ford for Jack Bowsher while still in college. Following graduation, he worked for two years for Petty Enterprises designing and fabricating cars and later he worked with Cotton Owens and Jim Ruggles before starting GAACO. In his years in NASCAR, Chuck worked with drivers such as Richard Petty, Pete Hamilton, Neil Bonnett, and Harry Gant, and owners such as Jr. Johnson, Cotton Owens, and Travis Carter. In addition to his work in NASCAR, Chuck was commissioned by General Motors to build a number of road racing cars for both the IMSA and Trans Am series and served as a suspension consultant for Jaguar cars with their GTP car in IMSA. Chuck also designed and built the GTP 935 Porches driven to victories in the 24 hours of Daytona, the 12 hours of Sebring, and the World Endurance Championship by John Paul and John Paul, Jr. Following his retirement, he moved to Marshall, N.C. and found a home within the community and with Builders Express in Mars Hill, N.C. In his spare time, he volunteered on the Madison County Arts Council. In addition to his mother, he is survived by his son, Adam Gaa of Opelika, Ala.; daughter, Rae Powers and husband Ian Randall of Brighton, England; brothers, John Gaa and wife Cynthia of Willis, Texas, James Gaa and wife Marilyn of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Thomas Gaa and wife Karen of Menlo Park, Calif.; and a precious grandson, Alex Powers Randall. Donations may be made to the Madison County Arts Council, 90 S. Main St., Marshall, N.C. 28753. An online register is available at
  • Sad News – Bobby Burcham: Bobby Wayne Burcham Sr., 73, of Rossville, Georgia passed away Friday April 10, 2009 at his residence. A resident of the North Georgia Chattanooga area for the past 50 years, he was self-employed in real estate. Bobby was a successful stock car driver from the 50’s to the early 70’s, winning several 100’s of races across the Southeast. He was an inductee to the Tennessee Racing Hall of Fame and was to be inducted later this year into the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame. He is preceded in death by his Father; Bobbie Burcham and Brother; Joe Burcham. He is survived by his Wife; Jean Knight Burcham of Rossville, GA., Mother; Opal Burcham of Chattanooga, TN., Daughter and Son-in-law; Vickie and Jack Harp of Rossville, GA., Son; Bobby Burcham Jr. of Chattanooga, TN., Sister and Brother-in-law; Sue and Charles Worley of Trenton, GA., 2 Grandchildren, several nieces and nephews. Graveside services will be held 2:00 P.M. Monday at Lakewood Memory Gardens-East with Elder Wayne Peters officiating. The family will receive friends Sunday from 5-9 P.M. at the funeral home. Arrangements are by W.L. Wilson & Sons Funeral Home Ft. Oglethorpe, Georgia Graveside services will be held 2:00 pm. Monday at Lakewood Memory Gardens-East with Elder Wayne Peters officiating. The family will receive friends Sunday from 5-9 pm at the funeral home. Arrangements are by W.L. Wilson & Sons Funeral Home Ft. Oglethorpe, Georgia. Burcham made 36 Cup starts from 1968-1979 with a 4th at Nashville in 1974 being his best finish.(4-12-2009)
  • “Celebration of Life” Planned for Michael Lance: Michael “Sweats” Lance, who passed away Wed., April 1, will be remembered Monday night, April 6, at Hayworth-Miller Funeral Home in Winston-Salem, N.C. A “Celebration of Life” is scheduled for 6:30pm. Lance was born October 27, 1966, in High Point, N.C., and worked for Richard Childress Racing as a transporter driver for the #33 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team. He had been a member of the NASCAR community for some time, previously working for Dale Earnhardt, Inc. and Joe Gibbs Racing. Lance is survived by his wife, Debbie Boose, and step-children Brandon and Bailey Boose. Hayworth-Miller Funeral Home is located at 3315 Silas Creek Parkway.(RCR PR)(4-4-2009)
  • Sad News – Michael Lance: Michael “Sweats” Lance, 42, of Advance, N.C., died Wed., April 1, 2009, at his residence. Lance was born October 27, 1966, in High Point, N.C., and worked for Richard Childress Racing as a transporter driver for the #33 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team. He had been a member of the NASCAR community for some time, previously working for Dale Earnhardt, Inc. and Joe Gibbs Racing. Lance is survived by his wife, Debbie Boose, and step-children Brandon and Bailey Boose. Funeral plans are incomplete.(RCR PR)(4-2-2009)
  • Sad News – Thom Tittle: Thomas Tittle, 63, passed away Sunday, March 29, 2009. Among many, his other passions were target pistol shooting and volunteering at Victory Junction Gang Camp. He worked at least one weekend or one week at camp every year since it opened in 2004. His hearing impairment made it difficult to work directly with the children so his duties were in the kitchen. Like everything Thom did in his life, he did it lovingly and to the best of his ability. It brought him great joy to help the camp help disabled and sick children get a chance to be “normal” and have a wonderful camp experience. If your heart has been touched by Thom and you would like to do something to truly honor him, consider making a donation to VJGC. 4500 Adam’s Way, Randleman, NC 27317 or Kim and the family want to thank all of you for your cards, gifts, words of encouragement and prayers. It is Thom’s wishes not to have a funeral service; however, there will be a celebration of his life/open house at a later date. More at Akron Beacon Journal.(4-1-2009)
  • Sad News – Lloyd Ruby: Racing legend Lloyd Ruby, a lifelong resident of Wichita Falls, passed away Monday night in Wichita Falls. TX. He was 81. Services will be at 2pm Saturday [March 28] at the Wichita Falls MPEC, Exhibit Hall A. Visitation will be from 5:30-7pm Friday at Lunn’s Colonial Funeral Home. Burial will be in Riverside Cemetery. Ruby won seven times on the USAC Championship Car Series in his career and also had endurance racing victories in the 24 Hours of Daytona, the 12 Hours of Sebring and the United States Grand Prix. But he is best known for the race he didn’t win. Ruby raced in 18 straight Indianapolis 500s from 1960-77, led in five of them and was out front for 126 laps. But he never won open wheel racing’s most prestigious prize. His biography, written by Ted Buss in 2000, was titled: “Lloyd Ruby: The Greatest Driver Never to Win the Indy 500.” Ruby’s best finish at Indianapolis was third in 1964. His only other top five finish at the 500 came in 1968. Five other times he placed in the top 10. In 1991, he was inducted into the Indianapolis 500 Hall of Fame. “When I was coming up through the ranks of racing, Lloyd Ruby was my hero”, said Al Unser, a four-time 500 winner.”He was honest and a hard racer. He didn’t pull bad things on you. You could run wheel to wheel with him and you didn’t have to worry about Lloyd. He made the race car talk. He was just as good as anybody. He was never secondary. Look at the record book. He should have won it (Indy) five or six times. Things just seem to happen. You wonder why people with the ability of Lloyd were not able to win. But he won everything else.” Ruby teamed with Ken Miles for his endurance wins at Daytona and Sebring in 1966 and also the World Sportscar Championship in 1966 and 1968. Ruby’s racing career was honored with the Bruton Smith Legends Award at the Texas Motor Sports Hall of Fame in Fort Worth in 2005. Last year he was inducted into the Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame in Tulsa and also named co-recipient of the Louis Meyer Award along with Helio Castroneves at the Auto Racing Hall of Fame induction ceremony and special recognition dinner in Indianapolis.(Times Record News), Ruby also ran one Sprint Cup race, at Riverside in January 1967, finishing 22nd in a Junior Johnson owned car.(3-24-2009)
  • Sad News – Hal Marchman: “Shalom and amen.” With that trademark ending to prayers he offered before every Daytona 500 for 46 years, the Rev. Hal Marchman endeared himself to race car drivers and hundreds of thousands of their fans. It was the Baptist preacher’s way of being inclusive, the same way he lived his life, whether he was counseling an alcoholic or persuading community leaders to take on some civic project. Marchman, 89, the retired pastor of Central Baptist Church, died unexpectedly at Indigo Palms Memory Care Facility on Sunday. After years of fighting dementia and memory loss, a sudden bout of illness ended his life, said his daughter Anne Marchman-Jones. “We feel like we got our fair share of time with him, but it’s hard because we didn’t expect (his death) to be so sudden,” Marchman-Jones said Sunday. Not only did Marchman pray with the drivers and fans before the race, he spent the rest of the day in the hospital area at the track to be available for drivers’ families if anyone was hurt. “Hal was a servant and a shepherd,” said NASCAR driver Darrell Waltrip, adding that Marchman always “took good care of his flock.”(Daytona Beach News Journal)(3-16-2009)
    SERVICES: see full notice and info about services at the Daytona Beach News Journal.(3-18-2009)
  • Sad News – Patricia Fielden: Patricia Henry Fielden, 84, died Sunday, March 15, 2009 at her residence. Mrs. Fielden was born in Knoxville, Tennessee, October 8, 1924 and is a daughter of the late William and Maebell Henry. Survivors include a son, Longtime NASCAR historian/writer Greg Fielden, [see Amazon for his books]; and a granddaughter, Patricia Ann Fielden. Services will be private.(Myrtle Beach Sun Times)(3-17-2009)
  • Sad News – Stub Fadden: NASCAR North legend Stanley “Stub” Fadden has passed away, Wednesday, March 11, 2009. Fadden, a veteran of both NASCAR North and the Busch North Series, is a 1980 recipient of the Don MacTavish Award, and received the NASCAR North Tour Sportsman Award in three different decades, being honored in 1968, 1981, and 1990. He was inducted into the New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2003. Fadden Racing began as a small operation in 1961 to support the career of Stanley “Stub” Fadden, known affectionately as “Pop” around the small town of North Haverhill, New Hampshire. In 1987, Stub began competing in the NASCAR North Series (now titled the Camping World Series East) and competed there on a full-time basis for the next 11 years with Frank Stoddard as crew chief [which included his last win in 1994 at Lee USA Speedway]. Stub’s career was highlighted by seven top-10 year-end finishes at a time when nearly 100 competitors were vying for starting positions every week. In 1989, Fadden Racing opened their doors to a second team – that of his grandson Mike Olsen, who went on to win two NASCAR Camping World Series East championships. Olsen now manages Fadden Racing as they mentor and prepare young drivers for a career in racing. Stub was awarded the Bunk Sampson Memorial Award at the NASCAR Camping World Series East Champions Banquet last December. Due to his health issues, Stub was unable to attend the ceremony, Mike accepted the award on Stub’s behalf. Stub’s long career included a dozen NASCAR Nationwide races, including a top ten at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in 1991.
    The family asks that cards be sent to: Charlotte Fadden, P.O. Box 427, North Haverhill, NH 03774.(
    Arrangements: Complete obituary and arrangements can be found at the Ricker Fineral Home site.(3-12-2009)
  • Sad News: Bill Herzog: On Friday, friends and family mourned the passing of Bill Herzog, who died at home in Platte City at the age of 88. Mr. Herzog survived the Great Depression, losing both his parents before he graduated from high school. During World War II, he designed aircraft. He and his wife had three children; sons Stan Herzog and Randy Herzog now serve as executives. Herzog Contracting is recognized as one of the nation’s premier transportation companies, with railroad and highway divisions. It has offices around the country, including corporate headquarters on Riverside Road in St. Joseph, and 1,200 employees.(St. Joseph News-Press and see Obituary here), Herzog was the owner of the #92-Herzog-Jackson Motorsports Nationwide Series team, which operated from 2000-2003 with drivers Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Green, and Todd Bodine.(3-9-2009)
  • Sad News – Jack McDonald: McDonald, Jack Edward, 72, of Richmond, passed away February 28, 2009. He was a devoted NASCAR enthusiast. He was a crewmember with Junie Donlavey #90 and Ken Schrader Racing. He maintained J.L. Minter Electrical Co. fleet of trucks and equipment for more than a quarter century, and ran his own auto service business. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Frances Varner McDonald; his son, Jack Edward McDonald Jr.; his granddaughter, Michelle Elizabeth McDonald Walls and husband, Steven Eric; and many others. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society or a charity of your choice. Online condolences may be made at Times-Dispatch)(3-7-2009)
  • Sad News – H. Lewis Compton: H. Lewis Compton, 80, who was known as the “Mouth of the South” for announcing every race at Martinsville Speedway for 44 years, died Friday at Memorial Hospital in Martinsville. Since 1962 he had been known as “The Mouth of the South,” a moniker bestowed upon him by Elmo Langley, one of NASCAR’s early drivers, car owner and longtime pace car driver. Compton announced every race at Martinsville Speedway from 1955 until 1999, worked in radio for 52 years until he retired from WHEE Radio and was a licensed auctioneer for 36 years. Surviving are his wife of 60 years, Lois Newman Compton of the home; two sons, John David Compton and Richard Dean Compton, both of Martinsville; five sisters, Doris Faye Clifton of Ridgeway, Carol Martin of Collinsville, Marie Hatchett of Penhook, Linda Hodges of Arkansas and Sheryl Epperly of Mechanicsville; one brother, Larry W. Compton of Smith Mountain Lake; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. The funeral will be at 2 p.m. Monday at Collins-McKee-Stone, Martinsville Chapel, with the Rev. David Adkins officiating. Burial will be in the Oakwood Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Starling Avenue Baptist Church, 932 Starling Ave., Martinsville, Va. 24112.(see story at the Martinsville Bulletin)(3-1-2009)
  • Sad News – Maynard Bodine: Bodine, 75, of Chemung, NY, passed away February 24, 2009 at the Robert Packer Hospital in Sayre, PA. He was the loving husband of Patricia J. (Wilcox) Bodine. The couple married August 29, 1970 and had 38 happy years together. Family and friends are welcome to gather from 6:00-8:00 p.m. on Friday, February 27, 2009, and again on Saturday, February 28th, from 10:00-11:00 a.m. at the Roberts Funeral Home, Inc., 279 Main Street, Wellsburg, NY. The memorial service to celebrate Maynard’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday at the funeral home. Burial will follow the service in Chemung Cemetery. (Elmira Star Gazette)
    AND The racing community is grieving the loss of Maynard Bodine, who built race engines for three generations of Bodines. The last of the five sons of Chemung Speedrome founder Eli Bodine Sr. died Tuesday at age 75 after a brief illness. Several members of the Bodine family from Chemung went on to make their mark racing stock cars, including Maynard’s brother Earl at the Speedrome, and his nephews Geoff, Brett and Todd Bodine in NASCAR. Maynard also tried his hand behind the wheel in the 1950s but soon realized others, like his brother, were faster. See full article: ‘Heart and soul’ of Bodine racing family dies.(2-26-2009)
  • Sad News – Dick Beebe: Dick Beebe, died Sunday of a heart attack at the age of 76. Beebe, a Kalamazoo [MI] native who lived in Belding, was best known in the Michigan auto racing community for being the founder and publisher of the Marc Times Racing News. The publication served fans throughout the United States for 47 years, keeping them up to date on a weekly basis about the happenings at Michigan tracks. The operation ceased about a year ago. Beebe, who is survived by his wife Kathy and seven children, was born in Kalamazoo in 1933. He was introduced to racing at a young age because his father, Paul Beebe, raced in the 1920s and ’30s. Paul later opened the Galesburg Speedway in 1948. Beebe also raced motorcycles, and he promoted races, too, including the Dealer’s Choice race that was staged at a number of tracks, including Crystal Motor Speedway and Kalamazoo Speedway. Beebe worked as an announcer, pit steward, scorer and groundskeeper for a half-century. Beebe’s funeral is scheduled for 2 p.m. Thursday at the Bangor Church of Christ, 214 N. Walnut St. in Bangor, Michigan.(Michigan Live)(2-25-2009)
  • Sad News – Scott Moyer: Edward Scott Moyer, Sr. (Scott), age 46, died Sunday, Feb. 15, 2009, at Carolinas Medical Center-NorthEast, Concord. Death was unexpected. He was employed for many years in the NASCAR racing industry as a race transporter. Survivors include his wife of 24 years, Robin Lynn Starkey Moyer; six children, Stephanie, Jenn, Charles, Schane, Scotty and Andrew; seven grandchildren, Ashley, Dannin, Carol Lynn, Trey, Cameron, Brendan and Edwin; his mother, Carol Gross Macina and husband Bill Macina and father Edgar Boyd Moyer and wife Carol Moyer; one sister, Beth Campbell; and three brothers, Alan Macina, Ryan Macina and Ted Moyer; and all their families. Memorials: May be made to the MRO (NASCAR ministries), Motor Racing Outreach, Smith Tower, Suite 405, 5555 Concord Parkway South, Concord, NC 28027.(Salisbury Post)(2-23-2009)
  • Memorial Service for Wolf: A memorial service for longtime NASCAR official Carl Wolf will be held Tuesday, Feb. 24 from 5pm – 6pm at the NASCAR Research and Development Center in Concord. Carl passed away Feb. 6 following a lengthy illness. For the past 10 years, Wolf worked for NASCAR in a variety of capacities. He spent time in the NASCAR garage as the supervisor of engine inspection for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. He moved into the area of officiating training in June of 2003 – a position he held until his death. Responsible for training and instructing officials in various areas of inspection with a specialized focus on engine training, Wolf was instrumental in the development and implementation of many of the tools and gauges that are still used today in the inspection areas. His vast knowledge, enthusiasm and patience helped make him an outstanding instructor, who was well-respected and highly revered by his students, co-workers and peers. Carl Wolf was 70. In lieu of flowers memorials can be made to Levine & Dickson Hospice House, 11900 Vanstory Drive, Huntersville, NC 28078, The American Cancer Society, 6000 Fairview Road, Suite 200, Charlotte, NC 28210 or to a charity of the donors choice.(NASCAR)(2-23-2009
  • Sad News – Lee Ann Darnell: ARRANGEMENTS: Lee Anne Darnell [mother of Erik Darnell], 49, of Beach Park, IL passed away on Monday, February 16, 2009, at home. Automobile racing was always a big part of her life. Lee Anne met Danny through racing and the two of them spent countless hours on road trips and at race tracks across the country, and continued to do so with their three children. She was proud of all her children’s accomplishments and encouraged them to follow their dreams. Lee Anne made life-long friends at the track and in the community with her good-natured spirit and passion for life. Survivors include her husband of 28 years, Danny; sons, Erik (fiancee’, Amber Moody) Darnell of Davidson, NC, and Casey Darnell of Chicago, IL; daughter, Dale (fiance’, Jeff LaBelle) of Beach Park, IL; father, Dave (Dawn) Metz of Eagle Nest, NM; mother, Eileen (Ron) Smith of Henderson, NV. A Funeral Service will be held on Monday, February 23, 2009 at 10:30 a.m. at Congdon Funeral Home, 3012 Sheridan Rd., Zion, IL.(2-20-2009)
    AND The funeral is on Monday, February 23 at 10:30 a.m. at Congdon Funeral Home, 3012 Sheridan Road, Zion, IL. 60099, (847) 746-1234. The visitation is on Sunday, February 22 from 5-8 p.m. Flowers can be sent to the funeral home or in lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Lee Anne’s name to the Victory Junction Gang Camp.(Roush Racing PR)(2-22-2009)
  • Sad News – Matt Hawkins: Matt Hawkins, one of the brightest young stars of the short track world, has passed away at the age of 21. Hawkins lost his life after an incident involving an accidental gun discharge Friday night in Georgia. On the track, Hawkins had built up an amazing resume. He won in his first career starts in both the ARCA RE/MAX Series and USAR Pro Cup Series – a seemingly-impossible accomplishment that may never be matched. He also won numerous Pro Late Model races in the Southeast and finished in the top three of the Snowball Derby for the last two seasons.(51 Sports)
    AND It is with great shock and sadness that Motorsports Management International confirms that Matt Hawkins, a young stock car racer from Canton, Georgia, died Saturday, Feb. 14, 2009 from a tragic accident at his home, according to the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office in Canton. Funeral arrangements have been scheduled for South Canton Funeral Home & Chapel on Monday, February 16 at 2:00pm/et. Viewing is available anytime after 12:00pm/et on Sunday, February 15.(MMI)(2-15-2009)
  • Sad News – NASCAR Official Carl Wolf: Carl Wolf, who for the past 10 years worked for NASCAR in a variety of capacities, passed away Friday night following a lengthy illness. Wolf spent time in the NASCAR garage as the supervisor of engine inspection for the Sprint Cup Series. He moved into the area of officiating training in June of 2003 – a position he held until his death. Responsible for training and instructing officials in various areas of inspection with a specialized focus on engine training, Wolf was instrumental in the development and implementation of many of the tools and gauges that are still used today in the inspection areas. His vast knowledge, enthusiasm and patience helped make him an outstanding instructor, who was well-respected and highly revered by his students, co-workers and peers. Carl Wolf was 70.(NACCAR PR)(2-7-2009)
  • Sad News – Clarice Lane: Clarice Lane, Darlington Raceway’s best-known female ambassador, died Monday evening after a long illness. Lane, 82, was a part of the inaugural event at the track in 1950 and an even bigger part of ensuing events for more than 50 years. She came to personally know hundreds of NASCAR drivers and their families. A native of Mullins, S.C., Lane served as administrative assistant to the president of the track. The late NASCAR Chairman and CEO Bill France Jr. referred to Clarice as one of his favorite people. “She sold the sport with her personality,” NASCAR Vice President of Corporate Communications Jim Hunter said. She was married to the late Floyd N. Lane. She is survived by three children, Reecie (Freeman), Neil, Johnny and five grandchildren. Visitation will be held at Belk Funeral Home in Darlington on Thursday, Feb. 5th from 5-7 p.m. Graveside services will be held on Friday, Feb. 6 at 3 p.m. at Darlington Memory Gardens in Darlington, S.C. The family has asked that in lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to: Trinity United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 16, Darlington, SC 29540.(NASCAR)(2-5-2009)
  • Sad News – Robert “Hoot” Auton: Robert “Hoot” Auton passed away Sunday, February 1, 2009 following a lengthy illness. He was 75. Robert, father of NCWTS Competition Director, Wayne Auton, and Buster Auton, who works in the Sprint Cup Series, was a former NASCAR official and known by many in the NASCAR community. Robert was also survived by his wife of 56 years, Jerolyn Stallings Auton; two daughters, Theresa Parker and husband Don of Conover, Brenda Abernethy and husband Randy of Vale as well as several brothers and sisters. The family will receive friends on Tuesday, February 3, 2009 from 6:00-8:00pm at Burke Mortuary located at Burke Mortuary located at 2516 North Main Avenue, Newton, NC [address corrected]. The funeral service will be held on Wednesday, February 4, 2009 at 2:30pm at Springs Road Baptist Church located at 3580 Springs Road, NE in Hickory, NC. Dr. Bob Philbeck and Dr. Spencer Edmonds will officiate. Memorials may be made to Springs Road Baptist Church Debt Retirement Fund.(2-2-2009)
  • Sad News – Lou Blaney: Lou Blaney, father of Sprint Cup driver, Dave Blaney, passed away Sunday, January 25, 2009. Lou Blaney was inducted into the DIRT Motorsports Hall of Fame in Weedsport, N.Y. He was the first driver to be elected to the Hall of Fame from this region. Blaney’s victory list in the DIRT Modifieds is virtually untouchable. Lou was inducted into the Pittsburgh Circle Track Club Hall of Fame in 1997 along with Jack Freeman, Jean Lynch, and Mike Klapak. Viewing hours are as follows: Tuesday, January 27, 2009 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm and 6:00pm to 9:00p At the Hartford United Methodist Presbyterian Church, Located on State Route 305 in Hartford, OH. Funeral Will Be Wednesday, January 28, 2009 at 11:00am. Cards can be sent to the Blaney Family At: P.O. Box 159, Hartford, OH 44424. See Sharon Speedway site and for info. And Obit at the Tribune Chronicle(1-25/27-2009)
  • Sad News: Kathleen (Kathy) M. Ford, 59, mother of Sprint Cup official Pam Ford, passed away peacefully in her home in East Kingston, NH on January 14, 2009 surrounded by her loving family after a short, but difficult battle with lung cancer. Kathy, as she was best known, was born December 27, 1949 in Beverly, MA, a daughter of the late Arthur W. and Phyllis A. (Westgate) Dawes. Mrs. Ford was raised in Warwick, RI and Chelmsford and Boxford, MA and graduated from Masconomet Regional High School in 1968. In addition to her husband, she is survived by her daughters Caryn Ford of East Kingston, Pamela Ford of Mooresville, NC, brother Douglas Dawes and wife Pam of Georgetown, MA, sisters Constance Dawes of Beverly, MA, Margaret Dawes of Hampton, NH, Patricia Turschman and husband Jeb of Henniker, NH as well as her “five bestest babies” Brianna, Joey and Teegan Ford and Derrick and Colby Batchelder-Ford as well as many special nieces and nephews.(1-19-2009)
  • Sad News – Sam Pistone: father of motorsports reporter Pete Pistone [CBS Sports/RacingOne], passed away in Arlington Heights, IL Wednesday night at the age of 78. Pistone worked with his brother, former NASCAR driver “Tiger” Tom Pistone in the 1950s and 1960s when the family team competed on the stock car racing scene of the Chicagoland area before moving on to the convertible and Grand National circuits of NASCAR. He is survived by his wife Pat and five children; Pete, Terri, Rose, Gina and Angela.(1-15-2009)
    SERVICES: more info and services at The Daily Herald.(1-17-2009)
  • Sad News – Frank Thomas: Moses Franklin “Frank” Thomas’ knowledge of engines was like a sixth sense — friends say he could fix them, build them and even identify illegal ones with his eyes closed. Thomas began a lifelong career as a mechanic during the Depression with only an eighth-grade education and eventually became an engine inspector for NASCAR at Daytona International Speedway. Thomas died Wednesday in his sleep at home in Orlando. He was 94.(Orlando Sentinel)(1-9-2009)
  • Sad News – Sam McQuagg: Sam McQuagg, the 1965 rookie of the year in what was then NASCAR’s Grand National Series (now Sprint Cup), died Saturday morning. He was 73. McQuagg competed in 62 races in NASCAR’s top series, getting a victory in the 1966 Firecracker 400 at Daytona in a Dodge owned by Ray Nichels. McQuagg worked as a commercial pilot after retiring as a racer. He was a member of the Jacksonville Speedway and the Georgia Automobile Racing halls of fame.(Charlotte Observer)
    MORE: He is survived by his wife, Joy Baggett McQuagg, and three children, Sam McQuagg Jr., Mark McQuagg and Rita Renfroe, all of Columbus, GA. Visitation will be Monday from 6:00-8:00 pm/et at McMullen Mortuary [3874 Gentian Blvd., Columbus, Ga 31907 706-569-8015]. The funeral will be at 11:00am/et Tuesday at McMullen.( In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Central Assembly of God Church [1219 15th St., Columbus, Ga 31901] or your favorite charity.(1-3-2009)