Sunday, September 25, 2005

9/25/05 Our Cause in Motion Results and Photos

A few weeks ago, I shared with you that Jason would be featured on the hood of a racecar for the Racing of the Missing program, a division of the National Center for Missing Adults.

My husband, Jim, son, Michael, and I went to the Nebraska Raceway Park to meet Tony, his family, and team members. We also met Terry Shearer, who so graciously lent Tony one of his cars for these events.

The good folks at Nebraska Raceway Park treated us like royalty. We were taken by van to the pit area, and treated with complimentary beverages. We stayed with family members of racetrack officials until Tony arrived. Later on in the evening, we were taken to a private seating area, which was fun. The people at the track were also quite generous in giving us mic time at the break so that we could tell our story.

We had a crash course in auto racing and learned the difference between a hobby stock and a late model. We were able to get fairly close to the track and watch the cars as they flew by. It was rather noisy, and a certain excitement was in the air, even amidst the busy preparations.

Tony, Terry, and Tony's Dad arrived, and we walked over to join them. This was our first sight of the car that bore Jason's photo on the hood. It looked wonderful on there, although I certainly wish there was no reason for my son's likeness to be on the hood of a racecar in this program.

Tony is a likeable and very fresh-faced youth. I am impressed that he goes to schools back in his native AZ and talks to kids about safety. I always enjoy meeting young advocates for our cause.

Tony was very patient and helpful in explaining some of the "mysteries" of the inner workings of the racecar to us. My son, Michael, wanted to sit inside the car, and Tony was very agreeable to that. It was neat to see Michael in the car, but I'm glad that I don't have to see him in it as it races down the track at a high rate of speed!

Tony finished 6th in his heat, but was not able to compete in the finals.

The next night at the Boone, IA track, we went back for more of the action. At Boone, Tony started 9th, and finished 4th. We were not able to attend the full week's events, but later in the week Tony was interviewed by the track and told Jason's story and about the cause.

(Because of Hurricane Katrina, we had no outside media coverage. I was not surprised, and I understood.)

Although I had no knowledge of the racing business prior, I can see how people would get hooked on it when they have someone to root for.

I was rooting for Tony, and of course for Jason. I was rooting for the crowd to listen to what we had to say and to understand the need of families like ours. I was also rooting for a 1st place finish for our cause in their minds and in their hearts.

Once again, I would like to thank Darrell LaMoure, Racing for the Missing, the National Center for Missing Adults, Wade Smith, the kind people at Nebraska Raceway Park, Terry Shearer and his wife, and Tony Steele and his family.


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