Dan Wheldon died Sunday afternoon after a horrifying fifteen-car crash at the Indy 300 in Las Vegas. The tragic accident injured three other drivers.
Wheldon's race car is reported to have reached speeds over 220mph as it rounded a turn on the Indy300 track on lap 11 out of 200. Wheldon was in the middle of a group of cars when he became entangled in the accident. His car climbed over the back of another car, went up in flames, and crashed into the retaining wall face on the outside edge of the track known as the catch fence.
Wheldon was airlifted to a local hospital but died shortly thereafter. Details surrounding his exact injuries have not been released.
Athletes, musicians, and actors all across Hollywood paid their respects to the late racing champion, most notably Ashley Judd.
Dan Wheldon's death hits close to home for Judd, whose husband, Dario Franchitti, is also an IndyCar racing driver (Note: Franchitti was awarded this Indy300's win based on his year-to-date performance).
Judd sounded shocked and saddened over a series of recent tweets late Sunday evening. Her message starts from the bottom:
Ashley's compassion and empathy were visible as she continued to tweet:
Judd's husband Franchitti was also clearly shaken when interviewed by CBS.
"One minute you're joking around at driver intros. The next, Dan's gone. I lost, we lost, a good friend. Everybody in the IndyCar series considered him a friend. He was such a good guy. He was a charmer."
The interviewer noted Franchetti was understandably emotional as Ashley brought him a box of tissues to help him continue on with questions.
Other Hollywood celebrities and athletes were actively voicing their grief and sadness over the loss of Wheldon on Sunday.
Curiously absent from the condolence outreach was Justin Timberlake, whose clothing line, William Rast, sponsored Dan Wheldon.
Wheldon, who won the Indy 300 in 2005, was just 33-years-old at the time of his death.
Image via Wenn.com
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