However, what might be a lesser known fact is that there’s truly more than one way to win.
Sure, crossing the finish line first is the most well-known way to get the job done. On a given night, though, there can definitely be more than just one winner.
Such will be the case on Saturday, June 24 at Little Rock’s I-30 Speedway. On this much anticipated night, racers and fans will join together to celebrate the life and prestige of fallen police officer, Will McGary.
McGary tragically lost his life in the line of duty on February 1, 2013. The hard-working young man was fatally struck by an impaired driver, while protecting and serving the citizens of Conway, Arkansas. He was only 26 years old.
While Will’s life may have been unfairly taken away far too soon on that fateful February day, his generosity and his spirit continues to live on.
He was an organ donor.
In fact, three recipients received his heart and organs. They continue to live healthy lives because of Will’s generosity.
Those who knew McGary are quick to tell you just how special his giving nature truly was. With this in mind, it led to the formation of the Will McGary Foundation. The Foundation was created in honor of Will to continue his legacy by benefiting both the youth and law enforcement in Central Arkansas.
Established by a group consisting of Will’s church family and friends, the Foundation provides equipment, training, counseling and general assistance to law enforcement officers in Central Arkansas. In addition, it provides assistance to youth in the same region with an annual award to one or more graduating high school seniors.
Now the racing community is doing its part to step up and support this great cause.
“Living in the Conway area, we were heartbroken to hear the news of Officer McGary’s passing back in 2013,” recollects Chris Sullivan, who owns Sullivan Racing. “It was just a terrible situation to lose such a devoted and passionate young man in such a senseless way.”
Sullivan goes on to say, “When we learned about the Will McGary Foundation, our team knew we wanted to do something to help bring awareness and raise money.”
On Saturday, June 24 – during the COMP Cams Super Dirt Series (CCSDS) event at I-30 Speedway – Sullivan Racing will be spearheading an effort to accomplish both goals.
Jack Sullivan, who pilots the team’s Dirt Late Model, will be donning a commemorative graphics scheme on his entry for the program. In addition, Jack’s car will feature a special number. While he normally races his familiar #18, on this night his number will be #474.
You see, 474 was McGary’s badge number.
“It’s a huge honor to run Officer McGary’s badge number on my car,” Jack Sullivan says. “I think we are all guilty of sometimes taking for granted the dangers that the men and women of law enforcement face every day to protect us. They are truly the bravest of the brave, and I thank them for all that they do.”
In addition to competing on the track in the Will McGary Foundation #474, the team will have a special show car staged in the grandstand area that will also display the commemorative design. This will provide an avenue for fans of all ages to get an up-close and personal view of a Dirt Late Model, while celebrating the life and legacy of Will McGary.
“We wanted to really do this night up special to have a commemorative car not only visible on the track, but also in the grandstand area,” Jack Sullivan comments. “We want to do our very best to spread as much awareness as possible about the Foundation and its mission.”
The team has also ordered special t-shirts for the event, and 100% of the sales will go directly to the Will McGary Foundation. In addition, I-30 Speedway will aid in collecting donations throughout the night.
“Hats off to Chris and Jack [Sullivan] for spearheading this effort,” said I-30 Speedway track promoter, Tracey Clay. “We are expecting a big crowd for this special event, so I think it will really bring the Foundation to the attention of a lot of new faces. The racing fraternity is well known for doing its part to help those in need, and I have no doubt that this night will live up to that legacy.”
For Chris Sullivan, it’s a night that he’s eagerly anticipating.
“Tracey Clay and her whole staff are really working hard to help us make this event be a huge success. So many other great folks are stepping up to the plate as well. I’m really excited on what the night will bring.”
The winner of the night’s feature event will receive $5,000. He or she will no doubt be quite pleased with their reward. However, the long-term effects of this racing program will result in countless others victors. These winners will include law enforcement and youths for many years to come.
It’s all further proof that on any given night there’s definitely more than one way to win.
For more information on the Will McGary Foundation, please visit www.willmcgaryfoundation.org.