HomeSportsLuke Combs Honors NASCAR Legend Dale Earnhardt at Daytona 500 Show on 20th Anniversary of His Death

Luke Combs Honors NASCAR Legend Dale Earnhardt at Daytona 500 Show on 20th Anniversary of His Death

by Joe Rutland
(Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Country music singer Luke Combs honored and remembered the life of NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt on the 20th anniversary of his death.

Combs performed before Sunday’s race started at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla.

When he was performing, Combs was wearing a jacket that honors “The Intimidator” on its back. There’s an imprint of Earnhardt’s face, his signature, and a list of the years he won the Winston Cup Series titles seven times.

Richard Childress Racing shared a picture of Luke Combs with his back turned to the camera. You can really get a good look at the jacket design.

Fans were responding on Twitter to Combs’ appearance as well as remembering Earnhardt.

One fan wrote, “Yes!!! Oh my GOODNESS @lukecombs Thank YOU for THIS jacket @NASCAR @NASCARONFOX @DAYTONA #DATYONA500 #Earnhardt”.

Another fan asks, “Seriously though…. where can we get that jacket???”

Dale Earnhardt Dies In Crash During 2001 Daytona 500

For race car fans, watching the Daytona 500 in 2001 was turning into a thrilling finish. That is, until a horrible crash which killed one of NASCAR’s true legends.

Dale Earnhardt was in fourth place as the race entered its final lap. He was aiming to take first place, driving in the usual gun-for-it style that made him a well-known name.

His No. 3 Chevrolet clipped Sterling Marlin’s car, then headed straight into the wall. Earnhardt was driving 180 mph upon impact. Pretty soon, fellow driver Ken Schrader hit Earnhardt’s car.

Upon impact, Earnhardt suffered head injuries and reportedly died at the race track. Officials did manage to pull him out of the damaged car and take him to the hospital. By then, Earnhardt already was dead.

Earnhardt Tragedy Forces NASCAR To Make Changes

It was one of the darkest days in auto racing history. What it did, though, is force NASCAR to make safety adjustments for its drivers. Changes were made not only with the driver’s gear and within a race car, but around tracks themselves.

This is worth remembering, though. No NASCAR driver has died from a wreck on a track since Earnhardt. NASCAR’s safety precautions have kept drivers from dying even when wrecks do happen.

People still look back on that day, especially during this year’s Daytona 500, with sadness in their hearts. Dale Earnhardt Jr. has kept his father’s memory alive through his own NASCAR career and beyond. In fact, Earnhardt Jr. captured the checkered flag at the 2004 and 2014 Daytona 500 races.