LEVEL CROSS, N.C.-- Tuesday afternoon, the NASCAR world and her home community was sadden by the death of Lynda Petty. Lynda was the wife of NASCAR Legend Richard Petty. She was considered the First Lady of NASCAR.
A release on the family's behalf said she died peacefully at her home in Level Cross, NC while surrounded by family and friends.
After word of Lynda's death social media started buzzing with the news, including tweets and statements from family members.
Statements on Lynda Petty's death:
Lynda's grandson Austin Petty: "We have lost my grandmother, but my family and our Victory Junction family are grateful to have had her love and wisdom for so many years. It was no secret that she was the cornerstone of the Petty family; a woman of humility and extraordinary strength. While we mourn her death, we also celebrate her life and the profound impact she had on those who knew her. The pride she had in her children, her grandchildren and her great-grandchildren was shared with us through her unconditional love. Her strong example of leadership outside of her home was most recently acknowledged by the Association of Fundraising Professionals when she, along with my grandfather, was honored with the Lifetime Achievement in Philanthropy Award for her personal commitment to seriously ill children and to our American troops. We honor my grandmother's legacy of inspiration and enduring love at Victory Junction today and always."
NASCAR CEO/President Bill France: "On behalf of the France Family and everyone at NASCAR, I want to offer sincere condolences to the Petty Family regarding the loss of their beloved matriarch, Lynda Petty," said Brian France, NASCAR Chairman and CEO. "Through the years, Lynda became an integral part of the NASCAR landscape. We have lost a true friend, who will be missed each and every day. Our thoughts and prayers will be with the Pettys throughout this difficult time."
Statement from Martinsville Speedway President Clay Campbell on the passing of Lynda Petty: "Our thoughts and prayers go out to Richard and the entire Petty family in their time of loss. Lynda is such a huge part of the Petty success story here at Martinsville Speedway. While Richard was winning races here in the early years, she was keeping tabs on their children while keeping one eye on Richard. For every one of those 15 races Richard won here, she was a driving force behind him. "She leaves behind such a huge legacy here at Martinsville Speedway and in our sport. Her smile and her spirit will be missed by us all."
Statement from Emily Coltrane, chair of the Randolph County Board of Education: "on behalf of all board members
The Randolph County Board of Education is deeply saddened by the death of Lynda Petty. She served as a member and leader of the Randolph County Board of Education for 16 years. Lynda Petty's profound influence on the schools of the Randolph County School System, as well as the lives of many students and employees, is too great to measure. The Randolph County Board of Education has lost a great friend and mentor. Lynda Petty's work in past years and vision for the school system's future will never be forgotten. The Randolph County School System is definitely a better place as a result of Lynda Petty's dedication and service over the years. Members of the Randolph County Board of Education would like to extend their condolences to the Petty family during this difficult time."
NC Governor Pat McCrory: "Lynda Petty was a gracious woman with an infectious sense of humor. She was the heart of the Pettys, always putting family first and giving them unconditional love as they took on the demands of competing at the highest level of racing," Governor McCrory said. "She was a great role model for North Carolina. Ann and I mourn her death and will keep her husband Richard and the entire Petty family in our thoughts and prayers."
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