This site is dedicated to the memory of
They freely dedicated their time to starting these racing sites so we could read about and see pictures of the sport of AUTO racing.
Len, Miles and John!
RIP Marcus Johnson,
He was a champion go-cart racer. He won over 200 races
From Les Stark
Marcus Johnson who was killed at Marysville Speedway in Northern California last Saturday was a champion go-cart racer. He won over 200 races. His great grandfather Frank Johnson age 89, who raced under the name Johnny Franklin was the 1955 Bay Cities Racing Ass'n. Hardtop Champion. His grandfather Bob Johnson raced Midgets with B. C. R. A. in the early 70's.
Fred Curtis Ede
(February 19, 1928 - January 3, 2013)
Fred Curtis Ede, 84, of Fresno, Ca, died January 3, 2013. Fred was born February 19th, 1928 in Fresno to Fred Ede and Dorothy L. Bates. He grew up and attended Roosevelt High School. He was an outstanding football player and was voted to the all-conference team. At Roosevelt, he made many life-long friends. He was known for hosting extravagant class reunion celebrations as well as attending monthly lunch gatherings with special friends.
In 1948 he married Bobby Whitley. They were married for 46 years. During that time, Fred worked side by side with his father at the Fresno Planning Mill. After working with Oscar Spano, he in turn established M&L Plumbing in 1966, a successful company that is now run by his son, Fred and grandson, Chad. In addition to the plumbing business, Fred was a farmer of plums, nectarines and oranges. Over-seeing his many orchards was a job he truly cherished.
Fred's heart also belonged to his race cars. He traveled the country racing. He groomed drivers such as Al Pombo, Bill Scott, Jeff Gordon, Kenny Erwin and Ryan Newman, resulting in numerous championships. His race cars remained a huge part of his life. One recently restored race car is on exhibit in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in Iowa. In 2011, Fred was inducted to the Legend of Motor Sports Hall of Fame for his accomplishments.
In Fred's spare time, he enjoyed traveling to his beach house in Shell Beach with his family, and visiting friends. He was also a huge supporter of the Fresno State Bulldog Football team. While his grandson, Chad was a player, he never missed a game and traveled across the country to show his support.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Bobby Ede and brother Lowell Ede.
He is survived by his son, Fred Ede Jr. and his wife Terry; daughter, Karen Bessey and her husband Steve; four grandchildren, Tracy Kirby, Chad Ede, Kevin and Cory Bessey; eight great grandchildren who adored him; and lastly his faithful dogs, Lacy and Dakota.
A graveside service was held Wednesday, January 9, 2012 at 10:30 am at the Clovis Cemetery. Following the service, the family hosted a luncheon at Pardini's in Fresno.
Evan Wayne Rutherford(1947 - 2012)
Evan Wayne Rutherford, 64, passed away unexpectedly Friday, July 27, 2012. Funeral: 11:30 a.m. Tuesday in Greenwood Chapel. Entombment: Greenwood Mausoleum. Visitation: 6 to 8 p.m. Monday at Greenwood Funeral Home. Memorials: In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Richland Hills Christian Church, 3908 Ruth Road, Richland Hills, Texas 76118. Evan Wayne Rutherford was born Nov. 18, 1947, in Tulsa, Okla., to John Sherman Rutherford Jr. and Doris Jean Rutherford. He was a 1966 graduate of Castleberry High School and attended Texas Wesleyan University before pursuing a racing career. After a racing accident in 1989, he retired and became a local businessman where he created and distributed motor vehicle performance products. Wayne was an amazing husband, father and grandfather. He loved anything outdoors, hunting, fishing and watching his girls play ball. He loved his Lord and Savior and on Friday he sat on the pole winning his biggest victory. Survivors: Wife, Sandy Lankford Rutherford; daughters, Tobi Rutherford Laing and husband, Jared, Ragen Rutherford Reed and husband, Dan, and Sidney Rutherford Hupp and husband, 2nd Lt. Daniel Hupp; grandchildren, Landri Jo Laing, Lincoln Daniel Laing and Ryland Randall Reed; brother, Johnny Rutherford and wife, Betty; sister, Beverly Rutherford Tuggle and husband, Benny; numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. He loved them all.
Published in Star-Telegram on July 29, 2012
Indianapolis 500 Driver Salt Walther Dies at 65
By Mike Thomsen - firstname.lastname@example.org | @Thomsen500
(Photo courtesy of Indianapolis Motor Speedway)
Indianapolis 500 driver Salt Walther, who was badly injured in one of the most spectacular crashes in the history of the race, has died at the age of 65, WIBC has learned.
Walther drove in the “500” six times, finishing last three times, including the first two times he started the race.
Walther was best known for the devastating crash he was involved in at the start of the 1973 “500”. As the field came down for the green flag, Walther’s car touched wheels with another, sending the Ohioan’s car up into the catch fencing. The impact exposed Walther’s legs and sprayed fuel into the stands, injuring several spectators. Walther’s car finally ended up upside down.
Walther received serious burns and had several fingers amputated.
Walther returned to the “500” the following year, finishing 17th. His best finish in the “500” came in 1976 when he placed 9th.
Walther also raced unlimited hydroplanes and competed in NASCAR.
In recent years, the former driver has had several brushes with the law, and battled an addition to painkillers.
Walther’s death was confirmed by the Montgomery, Ohio County Coroner’s Office.
Kent Roger Gandy
June 2, 1936-June 13. 2011
Ken passed away June 13, 2011 at his home in Concord after his strong fight against cancer. Ken was born on June 2, 1936 in Pittsburg, California to Clyde and Helen Gandy. He was a very passionate man full of charactor and tenacity. His life was devoted to supporting his family and to his love of racing. He retired from PG&E afrer 32 years as a gas service man. Ken's infamous 30 year racing career began at the age of 24 and ended with his final races athe age of 54 at Antioch Speedway. In his racing career, Ken drove modified hardtops, sprint cars, super modifieds, and midgets. His love for racing never ended even long after his career. In his final days, he was able to fullfill his dream of visiting Indianapolis Speedway and the Indy 500 Museum. He was a simple kind of man who, in his retirement, loved going to the movies, watching old westerns and spending time with his family. He is survived by his wife Nancy, his daughters Lori, Kelly, and Stacy, Son inlaws Tom and Paul, and his 8 grandchildren. He is now reunited with his daughter Robin who's death preceeded him. A celebration of his life will be held on July 9, 2011 at 1:00 p.m. at the Willow Pass Community Center in Concord.
RAYMOND J. BERGTHOLD
July 26, 1951-April 22, 2011 A Resident of San Jose
Raymond spent his life in Santa Clara Valley, graduated from Cupertino High School.
For many years, he worked primarily as a service writer at various car dealerships, including Ford and Honda.
He was also a big baseball fan and his sense of humor will be missed.
Raymond entered eternal life on Good Friday, April 22nd, 2011.
He is survived by his two sisters, Raylene (Curt) Nunes, Carolyn (Stan) Thomas, his step-mother Kathleen Bergthold, who cared for him during the last three years, his step-brothers and sister, Alan (Mary) Mello, Steven (Angie) Osborne, Jim (Dawn) Osborne, and Carolyn (Rene) Retuta. He was a loving uncle to many nieces and nephews.A Mass of Resurrection and Life was celebrated on Wednesday, April 27th at 10:00am at Queen of Apostles Catholic Church, San Jose, CA followed by burial at Oak Hill Cemetery in San Jose, CA.
passed away on April 4th
from complications of an aortic aneurysm repair
at New York Presbyterian Medical Center.
He was 69 years old. He was a dedicated NEMA
car owner for over 40 consecutive years.
Funeral services will be on Saturday (April 9, 2011) at
9 AM from Funk Funeral Home, 35 Bellevue Ave., Bristol, to St. Gregory Church, 235 Maltby St., Bristol,
for a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 AM.
Burial will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery, Bristol, CT.
The Northeastern Midget Association lost one of its most dedicated competitors and contributors Monday with the passing of Jimmy O’Brien. As a car owner and officer, O’Brien helped to write over four decades of NEMA history.
O’Brien, a NEMA member since 1970, said his greatest moment came in 1990 when son Matt jumped into his #16. That relationship carried into this season.
Introduced to the Midgets by his father, O’Brien got involved back in the early 1950s. After two years working with others in NEMA, he joined the owner ranks with the Ray Kelly #33. He always referred to Kelly, a NEMA legend, “as my mentor.” Chuck Daniel and Len Thrall also played key roles in O’Brien’s early career.
A member of the NEMA Hall of Fame, he built his own cars and motors for almost his entire involvement with the club.
His drivers included Johnny Evans, Hank Stevens, Doug Cleveland, Steve Eldridge, Paul Stoehr and Roy Daniel. Cleveland and Evans won in O’Brien equipment; Stevens won the 1975 dirt track title.
He was a walking NEMA encyclopedia, always willing to share a wealth of club history. He was part of several “eras.” Always a defender of the low-buck competitor, O’Brien, elected to the Contest Board in 1973, was a guiding force for many years. A one-time vice president, he stepped down in 2003 after 13 years as the club treasurer.
“Jimmy’s dedication to NEMA was incredible, an inspiration really,” says club president Mike Scrivani Jr. “He loved the Midgets and NEMA in particular. He was an officer under several presidents.
In all the years I knew Jim, seldom did he raise his voice. And over the past 10 years watching Jimmy and Matt was just a great thing.”
MELVIN "Mel" MCGAUGHY
Melvin McGaughy "Mel" , born Oct. 4, 1916 in Colgate, OK, died on Feb. 19, 2011 in Puyallup WA at 94.
A PHS grad c/o 1936, F.O.E. member, Machinists Union member, and avid midget race car driver, locally & nationally.
He loved to travel and was his happiest anytime he was behind the wheel of any car.
Mel had 20 WMRA wins in taking WMRA Championships in 1954 & 1955.
Preceded in death by a son Larry McGaughy, brothers Floyd & Orville & sister Edith.
He is survived by his wife Lorraine "Lori" of Puyallup, daughter Dianne McGaughy of Tacoma, step children Roger (Janet) Norbon of Tacoma, Doug (Sandy) Braun of Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, Dennis (Sharon) Braun of Puyallup, Bob (Susan) Braun of Yakima, Robin (Fujio) Pele of Kennewick, 16 grandchilren, numerous great grandchildren, nieces & nephews.
He will be missed.
by Tim McKinney
"Last week we lost another of our great racing heroes. Sonny Ates got his start racing flat track motorcycles; and that was really what he loved. However, somebody offered him a ride in a TQ midget; and he was so good that he just couldn't avoid being a race car driver. Former Columbus radio personality Jerry Castor was in the process of trying to get a racing career of his own started at about the same time as Sonny; and he remembers, "Sonny had a distinct advantage over many of the rest of us. He weighed about 120 pounds; and that advantage was hard to overcome."
Ates earned his reputation in a sprint car on the high banks of Salem, Dayton, and Winchester. He would set a new track record just about every time that he pulled onto the track. He was so masterful that everyone thought that he must really love running on the banks. However, apparently nothing could be further from the truth. Castor said, "He told me that everyone thinks that I love the banks; but they actually scare me to death."Ate's Indy Car career was contained in the seasons from 1968 to 1970. He made 15 starts; and finished in the top 10 five times with his best finish being a fifth place at Michigan in 1968. His lone appearance in the Indianapolis 500 came in 1969 when he finished back in the pack due to turbocharger failure.Soquel, CA Place of Birth: San Jose, CA
Castor offered high praise to Ates when he said, "Ates was much like Pat O'Connor. Like O'Connor as long as there was someone who wanted to talk to him, to have their picture taken with him, or just wanted an autograph. He had time for his fans." Rest in peace Sonny."
Kenneth Arthur Molica
Mary Parks 1917 - 2010
Mary Parks passed away today, Saturday, April 3, 2010 at 4:50 pm at her home in Corona Del Mar. Her family had assembled and was there when she passed on peacefully. She was 93. Mom was born on January 6, 1917 in Pocatello, Idaho. Her parents were Newton Osborne Mant and Myrtle Howells Mant. She grew up in South San Gabriel, California during the Great Depression. It wasn't a very pleasant time for most and her stories show just how desperate people were. Yet they were better off than some, for they had a home and her mother raised chickens and sold eggs, a ready source of cash and barter. Homeless men would come by the house, hungry and dejected, but Myrtle would tell them to go and cut some wood and she would prepare a meal for them. Mom learned, for she always had a can of soda or a sandwich for anyone who looked like they could use a bite of food. She taught us to be generous as well. We had a name for Mom; Mimi. Her oldest grandchild couldn't pronounce Mom or Mary and so called her Mimi. She liked that and so it became her nickname. Mom was the second oldest child in the household. Her eldest sibling, Fanny, died of diphtheria when Mom was about 3 and so Mimi became the elder statesman in the family. Her sister Helen came next, followed by Bob, then Virginia and finally the surprise baby, Carol. If ever there was a family blessed with personality and character traits, it was this family, but they got along and they loved each other.
Mimi was working as a waitress at a restaurant when a man walked in to order a hamburger. She told the story to us and to her grandchildren many times. A premonition came to her that told her, "This is the man that I am going to marry." She married that man, Wallace Gordon (Wally) Parks in 1935 and they lived in the South Gate/Huntington Park area of Los Angeles. For Mom this was what she always wanted, a loving family, with children and grandchildren. Her first child was Richard and he came along just a few weeks after her birthday in 1944, during World War II. At that moment, most Americans weren't sure that we would win that war or that our soldiers, sailors and airmen would ever make it back home alive. Dad had left to go into the military and was fighting in the South Pacific Theater of Operations at that time. He sent pictorial postcards with cartoons that he drew and a few words of love. After the war Dad built a garage house in Downey, California and Mom finally had her home and her family. She also attended the Downey Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints and this was one of the happiest times of her life. Mimi was there in the beginning when Dad was elected as the president of the Southern California Timing Association (SCTA), then became editor of Hot Rod magazine and finally founded the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA). She was proud of what her husband had accomplished and told everyone about him. Dad would take us out to the dry lakes to see the cars race; it was an all-day trip over dirt roads to get there. He also took us to see the boat races and sometimes to see his brother Kenny Parks run his Jalopy on the oval tracks.
We moved to a new tract home in Pico-Rivera in 1950 and soon thereafter in 1952 her second son was born, David, in March of that year. She named him David after a beloved uncle of hers and also because the name David means "Beloved," in Hebrew. Our parents separated and Mom made the decision, aided and abetted by her sister Helen, to move down to Corona Del Mar, a lovely beach town, in 1956. She loved the beach and the bay and often had vacationed there with her friends, sisters or children in the summer. At that time it was a very isolated little town and far from the Los Angeles County area where we grew up. She bought a pretty little yellow house and in 54 years never changed the color; the brightest yellow I've ever seen. Mom attended church in Laguna Beach and made life-long friends there. She also loved to play bridge with her friends well into the night. She lived on a hill, just a half block from a supermarket and told all her friends, "That will be good exercise for me to walk to the store and back with the groceries," she said. She never did walk up that hill, but she drove down to the beach to watch the ocean constantly.
In 1967 she welcomed into the family her first daughter-in-law, Epi, who would be a constant help in her life. Epi and Richard gave her three sons; Scott, David and Michael Parks. Scott would marry Stacy Rauch and give Mom a great-grandson, Brock Parks. David would marry Michelle Corbin and give Mom two great-granddaughters; Allison and Jennifer Parks. Michael would marry Tara Hafen and give Mom a great-grandson; Trevor Parks. Mom's youngest son would marry Barbara Coddington and they would have two wonderful daughters; Mari and Tamara Parks. Mari wed Matt Bell, another six and a half footer, for it seems the Parks' are tall people. Mom's health began to wane and a caregiver was called in to help her. This lady's name was Delia Asuncion and she became as close to her as if Delia was her own daughter. Mary Parks lived to be 93 and saw Fanny, Helen, Bob and Virginia pass on before her. Bob's widow, Olga Mant, and Mom's sister Carol Mant Eves are still with us. Her life wasn't always easy and there were many trials and tribulations, but her friends and family remember the times when she whistled and sang and called people on the phone to wish them a happy birthday. In fact, so entrenched was this "Western Union Birthday-gram," that we all looked forward to our birthdays so that we could "get the call." The phone was her life; she could use it to chastise or to praise and when she lost her voice, the link to the outside world and her many friends began to close to her as well. At her passing she was surrounded by loved ones and I think the hardships and misfortunes in her life drifted away and she found peace at last in another world with those who have gone before her. Rest in peace, Mom, we love you very much.
Richard and Epi Parks
Richard “Moon” Burgess
New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame Member
(DURHAM, CT.) Pioneering New England stock car racer Richard "Moon" Burgess passed-away on Wednesday, March 17 after suffering a serious stroke earlier in the month.
Burgess started his career in the midgets during the 1940’s, switching to stock cars later in the decade. He competed with success at virtually every track in the region including Thompson, Waterford, Plainville, Riverside Park, Kingston, Candlelight Stadium, Cherry Park, West Haven, and others.
Teamed with car owner Joe Fontana, Burgess experienced his greatest degree of success while behind the controls of the potent “Flying Eagle” #1 coupe. He retired from the sport in 1953 after a relatively brief but spectacular career in which he won over 200 races including 63 feature events in addition to a track championship.
Burgess was a founding member of the New England Antique Racers (NEAR). He was inducted into the New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2003.
Mass will be on Saturday March 20 at 11:30 A.M. at Notre Dame Catholic Church, 272 Main St. Durham, CT. Friends and family are invited to later attend a celebration of Moon's life from 2:00-5:00 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 100 Berlin Road, Cromwell, CT.
Burgess leaves his wife Rita, children Rich, Jr. and Sharon, and grandchildren.
Harold E. "Hal"Minyard
Harold E. "Hal" Minyard 85, Speedway, Indiana died Thursday March 4, 2010. He was born January 8, 1925 in California the son of Sidney and Edith Minyard. Hal was a professional race car driver and he retired as a mechanic from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1999 after 25 years. Mr. Minyard was an Army veteran of W.W.II. Visitation will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Monday, March 8, 2010 in Conkle Funeral Home Speedway Chapel. A memorial service will be at a later date. Survivors include wife, Dawn Minyard; seven daughters; son and his best friend, Freddie; 14 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.
Hal was the originator of the McHal helmets
1936 - 2010
Waterbury, CT – Gene Angelillo, a 14-time Northeastern Midget Association owners champion, died Monday after a short illness at St Mary’s Hopsital. Angelillo, 74, also had an ARDC championship on a 30-year plus resume that included over 112 victories, 107 of them in NEMA.
Calling hours for Angelillo will be Thursday, March 4, 1-to-3 and 5-to-9 at Chase Parkway Memorial, 430 Chase Parkway in Waterbury, CT.
Funeral services will be at Sacred Heart Church, 910 Main Street South in Southbury, CT on Friday at noon.
A Waterbury native, Angelillo’s team was “Dumo’s Desire” in recognition of his late father Dominic and more recently “Marilyn’s Desire” in honor of his late wife.
Marilyn and Gene, both officers, brought a passion to Midget racing in general and to NEMA in particular.
Survivors include daughter and son-in-law Laura Kibbe and granddaughters Tiana and Brooke.
Angelillo and Drew Fornoro formed one of the greatest owner/driver combinations in Midget history. Russ Stoehr and Joey Payne also won features and championships for Angelillo. He won races with Johnny Kay, Nokie Fornoro and Ted Christopher as well.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent for the
ANGELILLO MEMORIAL RACE
NEMA 261 Lincoln Road Sudbury, MA 01776
Uihlein, David Vogel
1921 - 2010
David Vogel Uihlein was born in Milwaukee on July 27, 1920, the son of Joseph E. Uihlein Sr. and Ilma Vogel Uihlein. He passed away peacefully at his home in Mequon, WI on Friday, January 29, 2010 at the age of 89. He is survived by his beloved wife of 44 years, Margery Holley Uihlein "MM", his children Lynde Bradley Uihlein of Milwaukee, and David Vogel Uihlein Jr. (Julia) also of Milwaukee; grandchildren Sarah Olson Zimmerman (Steven), Milwaukee; John Uihlein Olson (Ellen Blakstad) of Oslo, Norway; Dr. Alexander Uihlein (Lily), Boston; MA; Elizabeth Uihlein, Chicago, IL; Charles Uihlein, Milwaukee; great-grandchildren Joseph and Nathaniel Zimmerman, Milwaukee, and Hedda Olson of Oslo, Norway. He is also survived by Margery Uihlein's children Barbara Kuehn Frank (Richard) and Philip Gregg Kuehn (Kathryn) of Milwaukee; John Corliss Kuehn (Cris Mulvey) of Missoula, MT; her grandchildren, to whom he was also "Poppo", John Frank (Elsie Sunderland), Peter Frank (Katy); Charles Kuehn (Jane); Andrew Kuehn; Seppe Kuehn (Hope Mechelson); Erika Kuehn; and great-grandson, Reid Frank.
Mr. Uihlein was a 1939 graduate of the Hill School, Pottstown, PA. He worked at the Schlitz Brewing Company for a year before heading to the U.S. Brewers' Academy in New York City. He attended University of Wisconsin in 1940-41where he was one of two walk-on freshman football players who received letters. He proudly served in World War II as an ambulance driver for the American Field Service in Italy, Austria, and India. A businessman, he acquired the Banner Welder Co. in 1949. It continues as a successful business today. Carrying on his family's heritage in the brewing industry, he also purchased and ran the Oshkosh Brewing Co. in Oshkosh, WI, from 1961 to 1969. He served on corporate boards including Schlitz Brewing Co., Briggs and Stratton, Allen-Bradley Co., and First Wisconsin Bank. Mr. Uihlein was a man of many enthusiasms. He had a colorful personality, and was a wonderful storyteller. He was an ardent naturalist and outdoorsman. He was happiest hunting or fishing in northern Wisconsin or Canada with "MM". He was the founder and president of the Milwaukee chapter of the Ruffed Grouse Society and active in his support of Ducks Unlimited, the Trout and Salmon Foundation and the Nature Conservancy, among others. Mr. Uihlein was an avid collector. He collected antique cars, especially 1930's Indianapolis 500 race cars, as well as old boats, airplanes, and duck decoys. He restored many of his classic cars with his own hands. A 1925 Bugatti, a gift to Mrs. Uihlein, won a blue ribbon in 1989 at the Concours D'Elegance in Pebble Beach, CA. In 1995, he founded the Harry Miller Meet. This national show and race car event is held every year at the Milwaukee Mile for collectors and aficionados of antique race car engine designer Harry Miller. Mr. Uihlein will be deeply missed by family and friends for his great love of life, his capacity for friendship, fun, and devotion to causes close to his heart. The family wishes to thank all those who have provided devotion, care, and comfort for Mr. Uihlein. A visitation will be held at the funeral home on Tuesday, February 2, 2010, from 4 to 7 PM. A private memorial service will be scheduled at a later time. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Ruffed Grouse Society, National Audubon Society, The Hill School, or the charity of your choice.
Michael BOTELHO, SR
Michael Botelho, 52, was born in Santa Cruz, CA, on March 14, 1957, passed away on December 15, 2009 after a year long battle with cancer.
Michael was a graduate of Reno High School and a local business owner. Michael will be missed by his family and all of his friendships that he developed over the years as a driver and co-owner of MMS Karting in Reno. Michael raced Go-Karts as a youngster and made the transition to midgets and sprint cars from age 18 to his late thirties.
Michael is survived by his parents, Bill and Betty Botelho, wife, Corrina Botelho, children Michael Jr, Christina, Jamie and Johnny and his grand children Qualik, Jaylynn and Azia.
Granville W. Warke
Granville W. Buster Warke, Walnutport native, nationally known race car driver, restorer and Offenhauser engine builder, of Center Valley, passed away peacefully in his sleep on February 20, 2008, at the age of 93. In 1934, Buster met Walt Killinger and made his debut as his driver in 1935 at Charlestown, W.Va., and he also ran midgets for Major Hawley at the Nutley, N.J., Velodrome. Buster served as a rifleman with the unit known as The Big Red One during World War II in the European and African campaigns. After World War II, he drove Jimmy Wilburns sprint car with the International Motor Contest Association throughout the Midwest during the 1946 season. Buster was a steady AAA sprint car performer with the ODay Offy and Dutch Culp Offy before retiring from driving in 1956. In 1957, he was the chief mechanic for the Ed Stone sprinter in which Bill Randall won the USAC Eastern Sprint Car Championship. Buster served as chief mechanic for several Indianapolis teams in the 1950s and 1960s, and in 1958 went to Monza, Italy, with the Amos-Sclavi team. In May of 2005, he was the Grand Marshall of the vintage race car celebration at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and on June 3, 2006, he was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame. He was an avid hunter, fisherman and member of Saucon Masonic Lodge 469, and one of the premier restorers of Offenhauser engines and vintage race cars. He was predeceased by his wife, Ruby, in 2003. Services: A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday, February 26, and friends may call from noon till the time of services Tueday, at Weber Funeral Home P.C., 1619 Hamilton St., Allentown. http://www.weberfuneralhomes.com. Contributions: In lieu of flowers, to the Eastern Auto Racing Historical Society, P.O. Box 333, Orefield, PA or the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing, P.O. Box 688, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055.
Published in the Morning Call on 2/23/2008. "
Kenneth James "Kenny" Lay, 79, of Sarasota, FL, formerly of Ottawa Hills, passed away Friday, January 1, 2010, at The Toledo Hospital, surrounded by his family. He was born May 17, 1930, in Toledo, Ohio, to Reinhart and Mary (Vetter) Lay. He graduated from Macomber High School in 1949, where he was All City in basketball. Kenny was drafted into the United States Army in 1951, served during the Korean War. He married Betty Borden in September of 1956 in Toledo, Ohio and she preceded him in death in 1996. An established businessman and entrepreneur, Kenny started the Lay Transmission Company in 1956. A trusted business, Kenny established contracts with city of Toledo, the state of Ohio and the Canadian Government. In addition to his transmission company, he owned and operated the West Toledo Recreation Center, Lay Industries and maintained numerous real-estate holdings. Kenny was very active in car racing, owning various racing teams. His numerous accomplishments in racing, included an IMCA Championship, a National Drag Racing Championship and in 1970 he won the Sprint Car USAC Championship. In addition to his car racing, Kenny was an avid collector of classic cars; winning many awards, most recently 1st place in the Ford Nationals at Auburn Indiana, with his 1940 Ford Convertible. Among the many positions he held, Kenny was past president of the Automotive Service Association of Toledo (ASA), a member of the Toledo Opera Guild, The Apollo Society of the Toledo Museum of Art and a member of Gulf & Bay Club, Sarasota FL. He also was a longtime member of the Inverness Country Club, The North Cape Yacht Club in Lasalle, Michigan, and a Wood County Sheriff's Office Special Deputy. Kenny was a world traveler. He was most happy when working on a car or spending time in Siesta Key, Florida with family and friends.
Kenny is survived by his son, Kenneth James (Debra) Lay Jr. of Rossford, OH and their children, Kenneth James III, Kaitlyn E., Kyle R. A. Lay; son, Bradley E. (Lisa) Lay of Ottawa Hills, OH and their children, Brittany B., Bridgette A., Bradley E. Lay, Jr.; Brother, Paul (June) Lay of Wauseon OH, and son-in-law, Tim Gladieux and his children, Kendra M., Monica B., Marissa P. and Virgil A. Gladiuex II., all of Ottawa Hills, OH, and special companion, Rosalie Richards of Perrysburg, OH. Along with his wife Betty, Kenny was preceded in death by his daughter, Laurine A. Lay-Gladieux and sister, Eleanor Lay-Roberts.
Hans, Schmidt, 1928-2009
Hans,81 a retired supervisor for Western Electric and A.T.&T., died Sunday, October 25, 2009. Service, 10 a.m., Friday, October 30, Downing & Lahey Mortuary West. Preceded in death by wife, Helen; sister, Gretta Stenson. Survivors: sons, David of Houston, TX, Duane of Goddard; daughter, Danette Koehn of Furley; grandchildren, Heather Koehn and Gus Schmidt. In lieu of flowers, memorials to american Heart association, 3816 Paysphere Circle, Chicago, IL 60674 and Wichita Toy Train Club, P.O. Box 4091, Wichita, KS 67204. Tributes may be sent to the family via www.dlwichita.com
Dad at about age 3 immigrated from Germany with his Mother and Sister. Grandpa had come over a couple years earlier , He graduated from Arsenal Tech High School in Indianapolis, and then after he and Mom were married he started working at the Western Electric plant on Shadeland Road. In 69 he was transferred to the Shreveport plant and about 75 he went to Wichita where he retired.
Dad was a racer when he was young and real race fan most of his life.
Maj. General (ret.) Robert Grant Moorhead 88, of Indianapolis, passed away on October 11, 2009.
Mr. Moorhead served as USAC Chairman of the Board from 1982-2001 after serving as a Board Member since 1968. A past president of the 500 Festival Committee, he conceived the very successful USAC Winners’ Circle Club. He was born on Sept 4, 1921 to Robert L. and Roxanne Sanders Moorhead in Orleans, Indiana. He was a graduate of Indiana University where he was a member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity. After college, he began Officer Candidate Training School and soon found himself in Europe as a replacement officer assigned to the 115th Infantry, which had been decimated on D-Day. When he returned from Germany as a young Captain, Bob joined the Indiana National Guard, eventually rising to the rank of Major General and Division Commander. He later was appointed Deputy Commander of the U.S. Training and Doctrine Command. He earned numerous military decorations, including the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit with Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Bronze Star Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster. One of the high points of his military career was being elected president of the Association of the United States Army. Bob joined Central Publishing Company in 1947 and was its President and owner from 1960 – 1989. He loved the Indianapolis 500, and was one of a handful of city leaders that founded the 500 Festival Association, serving as its President in 1963. He continued his involvement, heading the 500 Parade Safety and Security for decades. A longtime member of the downtown Kiwanis Club, Bob was instrumental in the relocation of the Kiwanis Headquarters from Chicago to Indianapolis. He served Kiwanis faithfully at every level; as a club President, a District Governor and as International Foundation President. As a tribute for the many Kiwanis clubs he built, members he recruited and hours he devoted to the children of the world, Bob was recognized just last year when Kiwanis unveiled a state of the art facility, the Robert G. Moorhead Auditorium and Leadership Education Center. He was a Member of the Indianapolis Board of Public Safety, the Police Merit Board and the State Traffic Advisory Committee. Bob served as President of the State Armory Board for decades, and was proud to have the downtown Armory renamed the Tyndall-Moorhead Armory. Until his health failed him, he never missed an American Legion Convention, continuing the legacy his father began in 1919. Growing up on a farm in southern Indiana, Bob never had the opportunity to participate in Boy Scouts as a child. He certainly made up for that as an adult, serving as President of the Crossroads Council of Boy Scouts of America. He cherished his Scouting Silver Beaver Award. Whether the call was for help developing a public television station in Indianapolis or for the American Cancer Society or the Salvation Army, Bob was always "front and center." And, in the end, he would hold a key leadership position in whatever organization sought out his expertise. For his tireless dedication to his community Bob was awarded a total of five Sagamore of the Wabash awards from five different Indiana Governors! He also found time for camaraderie and fellowship. He was a member of Northminster Presbyterian Church, the Columbia Club, the Indianapolis Athletic Club, Meridian Hills Country Club, Tippecanoe Lake Country Club, The Army Navy Club in Wash. D.C., and the Skyline Club. Bob is survived by his wife of 61 years, Margaret (Maggie) Bachelder Moorhead. Bob had known Maggie since the day she was born. He also leaves five children, James (Martha) Moorhead of Little Rock, Ark; Richard (Margy) Moorhead of Fishers, IN; Barbara (Danny) Hockett of Carmel, IN; Sandy (Ed) Hale of Dallas, TX; Janet (Ed) Hourigan of Indianapolis. He was the proud grandfather of 19 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren who will cherish memories of time spent with Papaw at Lake Tippecanoe. He was preceded in death by his sister, Anne Moorhead Burge and grandson, Robert Daniel Hockett, Jr. The family would like to thank all of the staff at Marquette Manor for making the "General" feel at home these past six years. Special thanks to Alaa, Victoria, Tony and Jerry, his wonderful care-givers, whose individual attention was so appreciated. Visitation will be Sunday, October 18 from 1:30-5:00 pm at Crown Hill Funeral Home, 700 W. 38th St. Funeral Service will be held at 11:00 am on Monday, October 19 at Northminster Presbyterian Church, 1660 Kessler Boulevard East Dr, Indianapolis. Military Burial to follow at Crown Hill Cemetery. Memorial donations may be made to Kiwanis International Foundation, 3636 Woodview Trace, Indianapolis, IN 46268 and to the 38th Division Association, co Monument Fund, 3912 W. Minnesota St., Indianapolis, IN 46241. Online condolences may be sent to www.crownhill.org. Arrangements entrusted to Crown Hill Funeral Home.
John M. LeVan
1948 - 2008
John M. LeVan, publisher, webmaster and editor of www. openwheelracers.com passed away on Thursday, December 18th 2008, just ten days shy of his 60th birthday, having been born on December 28, 1948.
He was pre-deceased by his first wife, Judith E. (Paup) LeVan, who passed away on June 13, 1981, and his mother, Barbara V. (Pluta) LeVan who passed away on July 17, 2008.
John worked at Cott beverage in Reading, Pa. prior to going on disability a couple of years ago.
He was an Army veteran, having served our nation in Turkey during the Vietnam era.
He was involved in many areas in auto racing in the Pennsylvania area, having been a reporter and photographer for Keystone Auto News and doing public relations work for the United Racing Club. He was also a member of the Eastern Motorsports Press Association.
Around 1999, he first heard of a man named Lenny Calinoff. Eventually, they would hook up together and they both got involved in Lenny Calinoff’s OpenWheelRacing.com. Slowly, with a lot of hard work, they managed to get the website grown into one of the most respected websites devoted to motor sports.
On December 1, 2004, Lenny Calinoff passed away. For a short period of time, after his death, the website was run by Mr. LeVan. Some minor problems arose and Mr. LeVan was, more or less, forced to create a new website, and it was named OpenWheelRacers.com.
John was able to devote countless hours to this new website, usually working at night so the next days edition would have up to date information for his readers.
John was quite a “story teller”. You could give him the name of a driver, either local or in a lot of cases, a nationally known driver, and John would have stories about them. He was, to many, a walking encyclopedia of auto racing.
John, along with Lenny, were quite instrumental in bringing along new writers – not only for their website, but for other areas in the media, as well.
I got involved with both Lenny and John a few years ago – like around the year 2001. Lenny and John both pressured me into writing for their website. Eventually I tried it, liked it, and have had a great time writing for OWR.
There were times when John and I would travel together to various events, like to Richmond for the IRL/USAC races, or going to the EMPA Conventions, when we would share a room together. And, yes, he’d tell me quite a lot of stories, too. He would confide in me about the website and how he wanted it to prosper and be one of the best that would be devoted to auto racing. He was so proud of what the website had become.
By Tom Avenengo
I knew Him since the mid 60’s when He lived up in the Santa Cruz mtns I had gone up there several times to visit and watch Him do His magic on His midget. Met His whole family up there, Same mold as Him. You couldn’t meet a nicer Family.
Sad to say But Harry passed away a couple of months ago. I never got the chance to write the article.
HARRY STRYKER was one of a kind, May He Race for Ever From Now On.
Hi Den, "Sorry for the delay but had a few doctor appointments too take care of .I will try and answer your questions in the order you asked them.
Went too my first race in 1946 at Bayshore stadium in San Francisco and then worked for the Kelleher Bros. who had a midget, also met Charlie Lawlor in high school who was my classmate in auto shop. We were racing nuts and went to every race in the area, big cars, roadsters, stock cars and midgets. We bought a 1934 Ford and tried our hand at Hard Tops, One race and we said No way We need a real race car
We then bought a KKV/8 60 from Buzz Balfiore that Tommy Copp was driving, He was not to happy.
I went in the Navy in 1951 and Lawlor ran the midget as He was exempt as head of a household.
In 1961 or 62 we bought a KK offy from Jack London
In 1963 we won the BCRA indoor championship==13 fast times 1 –2nd 1966 BCRA overall champ with Vukie jr driving, Stockton champ with Dee Hileman, 2nd in the northwest with my son Mike Driving 1984 1985
I learned most of my Offy knowledge from Jack London
I can’t tell how many I have overhauled 1 to 2 hundred maybe
Some of my drivers were—Vukie Jr, Gary Bettenhausen, Chuck Rhode, Billy Cantrell, Don Machen, Dee Hielmam, Dean Holden, Bob Tattersall, Mike Mc Greevy. Bob Dejong. Charlie Lawlor, and my sons Harry and Mike.
Just overhauled one last month
Always willing to help anyone with a problem
Yes I still have one
Now I am passing the gathered knowledge too my son Mike who is well equipped to due the job right."
Miles Nelson 1941-2008
Miles Nelson, 66, of Wendover UT, passed away on Memorial Day May 26th. He was born on Aug 25th 1941 in Paget,Bermuda, to George and Olive Nelson. He grew up in Bristol, CT. and then proudly served our country in the U. S. Air Force. Miles was also an avid auto racing fan and had a passion for golf. He is survived by a wife Joann, four children, Michael, Sandra(Conner), James, and Sheri (McCammon), a granddaughterMackenzie (Conner), and a sister Norma (Blair). Services will be held in West Wendover NV. and St. Petersburg FL.
Miles Nelson another one who helped bring Me up on the internet. And one of the few I had the pleasure of actually meeting in person.
Miles was another of the mid week forum chatters with Lenny and the “GANG” way back around 10 years ago. Good name for that bunch for sure. Most nights it was a race to see who got who going first. Miles was no slouch when it came to standing up for what He said(preached) . And He would not back down from His view point very often . One thing can be said about Him He never forgot very much, His mind was like a walking encyclopedia about Indy cars and more so eastern modifieds. He at one point drove some of those cars .
When We got together on the net it was sure some fun days.
His own site indyracereports.com had quite a following of Indy car lovers. With Miles probably the biggest lover of those cars and that big race.
Well another one gone to soon, But He did it pretty good while here. If you ever saw Him the night before the 500 you would surely understand that one.
Miles I hope the golf game is good where ever You are.
RIP Old Friend
Mr. McCoy, who also was in the tire business much of his life, died suddenly on April 16 2009 at a Modesto hospital, his family said.
Friends and racing colleagues remembered him as a skilled stock car driver who would have ranked with national legends had he raced full-time.
"Nobody could drive a short track like Jack McCoy — nobody," said Dick Hagerty of Oakdale. "He was just in a class of his own."
Mr. McCoy, a Dodge driver, won a record 54 races in the 1960s and 1970s in NASCAR's regional series, known at various times as Grand National West, Winston West and Pacific Coast Late Model Series. He finished first in the final standings in 1966 and 1973 and second four times.
Mr. McCoy balanced the racing with his work at McCoy Tire Co. and his home life with his wife, Peggy Joyce McCoy, and seven children.
Mr. McCoy was born March 29, 1937, in Los Angeles and later moved with his family to a ranch near Ceres. His father, John McCoy, opened McCoy Tire on Ninth Street in Modesto in 1950.
Jack McCoy, who attended Turlock High School and Modesto Junior College, went to work in the family business.
He later opened his own tire shop on McHenry Avenue, eventually branching into specially made tires and other supplies for race cars.
Mr. McCoy is survived by his wife; his son, Dr. Harry Brown of Modesto; six daughters, Gina Vance of Modesto, Tracee Collins of Kansas, Kathleen Lengel of Ripon, Kim Tofanelli of Sacramento, Cindy Brown of Modesto and Christine Brown of Incline Village, Nev.; sister, Louise Barnick of Modesto; brothers, Dan McCoy of Atascadero and Robert McCoy of Modesto; and 14 grandchildren.
A service will be at 1:30 p.m. Monday at Franklin and Downs, McHenry Chapel, 1150 McHenry Ave., Modesto.
Remembrances may be made to the Carole Sund-Carrington Memorial Reward Foundation, 301 Downey Ave., Modesto 95354, or to a favorite charity.