Denver-based Furniture Row Racing is stepping up in a big way this weekend at the Brickyard 400 to honor the victims of last weekend’s horrific mass murder in Aurora, Colo.
The team will pay tribute to the victims of the Aurora tragedy, with Regan Smith's No. 78 Furniture Row Chevrolet carrying the name of the town and the names of each of the 12 people who died in the shooting on its quarter panels.
In addition, the hood of the car will showcase a ribbon, and inside the ribbon will be a memorial cross and the red and gold logo that appears on the Colorado state flag
The rear bumper will include the following inscription: “For Those Lost, Those Injured And Countless Acts of Bravery 7/20/12.”
The movie theater where the shooting took place is about seven miles from the Furniture Row Racing shop in Denver.
The tragedy struck close to the Furniture Row family. Kimber Avra, an employee of the Furniture Row Cos., was at the Aurora movie theater with her friend Micayla Medek. Avra suffered scrapes and bruises, but sadly, Micayla was one of the 12 who was killed in the shooting.
"Our hearts go out to the victims and to their families," said Furniture Row Racing general manager Joe Garone. "It really hits close to home for us here in Colorado. The movie theater where the shooting took place is only a few miles from where our team is based in Denver. We mourn the loss of life from this senseless tragedy, and feel we also need to stand up and acknowledge the heroism of those people who put their lives on the line to save others. Our thoughts this weekend will be with all the people who suffered from this horrific act of violence."
Tom Jensen is the Editor in Chief of SPEED.com, Senior NASCAR Editor at RACER and a contributing Editor for TruckSeries.com. You can follow him online at twitter.com/tomjensen100.