Feb 28 2001
WASHINGTON, DC - Senator Tom Carper pledged today his support of a Senate resolution honoring NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt. As a lasting tribute to "The Man," Senator Carper also introduced a testimonial into the Congressional record. His tribute is listed below. "Today we stand and honor the life and accomplishments of "The Man" Dale Earnhardt. Millions of Americans will remember him as a NASCAR legend, perhaps the best that ever raced. But the people I've spoken with and read about who knew him well remember better a kind father, a loving husband, and a trusted friend. For over 21 years, Dale Earnhardt delighted hundreds of thousands of people at the Dover Downs International Speedway in my state of Delaware. Like most of the places Dale raced, at Dover Downs he won, and won big. But the people of my state honor him for more than his wins at our NASCAR track, three first-place finishes - or the money he earned there, the most of any Winston Cup driver in history. The reverence and respect from NASCAR fans stems from his constant pursuit of excellence and his refusal to give less than his all every time he took to the track. They called him "The Intimidator," and on the track, that was true. But to the fans in Dover that he spent time with signing autographs, shaking hands, and in some cases sharing dinner at their kitchen table, Dale Earnhardt was known as "The Man." Last Friday, Dover Downs opened up to those who needed a chance to say "good bye." Even though a blizzard had blown through our state the night before, over 5,000 people turned out to pay their respects. In a moving display of affection, families created in the winner's circle a shrine of flowers, posters, hats, pictures, and poems honoring their hero. I was told once that the greatest measures of a man's life are the people he's touched, the difference he's made and the standards he's set for others to follow. Despite his passing, Dale Earnhart's legacy of excellence will forever influence his sport and its millions of fans. We honor him today for the lives he touched and the children he inspired."