On February 18, 2011 we will be remembering the loss of the great . I became a fan of Dale Earnhardt Jr. and really a major fan of NASCAR in general right around the end of the season in 2000.
I remember being at my grandparent's house the day I saw Dale Earnhardt Sr.'s accident that took his life. It's hard for me to remember much about that day because I was only 11 years old. I do however remember Michael Waltrip winning and Dale Earnhardt Jr. finishing second and I was jumping up and down.
Then it came over that Earnhardt Sr. had passed away. I cried, not because it was Dale Earnhardt Sr. dying but because it was Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s father passing away. That's why tears came to my eyes at only 11. I began to watch videos of Dale Earnhardt Sr., whether it was him driving or away from the spotlight and I realized how important he was to the sport. He wasn't just an icon in that car, but he had one of the most unique personalities there has ever been in a sport to this day. I enjoy reliving Dale Sr.'s life through the eyes of his daughter Kelley Earnhardt on Facebook where she shares intimate photos and stories and makes us all feel like we were part of their family.
Though I was never a fan of Dale Earnhardt Sr. while he was walking on this earth, he'll always hold a place in my heart for his contribution to the sport and the way he could light up the television. So I'm one of those racing fans who didn't realize who Dale Earnhardt Sr. was until he was gone. Every NASCAR fan whether they were a fan of you or not misses you Sr., and now you are racing the #3 up above.
* I put this picture on here, not because it has a direct relation to Dale Earnhardt Sr., but to show the the sport is still going strong even though we lost one of the greatest.
** From my personal collection of photos