Every human life has value.

I’ve become a pretty big IndyCar racing fan over the past few years since my parents started doing some wheldon.pngmedia coverage of it. Needless to say, I was deeply saddened by the death of driver Dan Wheldon following a fiery 15-car crash on the 12th lap of the final race of this year’s IndyCar championship series in Las Vegas yesterday. Dan was an incredible driver and most racing fans will remember him for his many accomplishments on the track, including two Indianapolis 500 wins, the most recent win being this year’s unforgettable finish, and the points Champion of the Series in 2005. But I think Wheldon would agree that his most important achievements happened off the track when he married his wife Susie and became a father to his sons Sebastian (2 years) and Oliver (6 months).

Say what you want about the wisdom of driving a car at 220 MPH, Wheldon’s sudden death at just 33 years wheldon-crash.pngold is a reminder of the shortness of this life and that the end can come at any moment for any one of us. Those of us who fight for the right to life of every human being on this earth must also be joyfully aware that this life, as beautiful as it may be, is not our ultimate end. Though we fight for truth and freedom in our beloved country, it remains but an earthly dwelling place, a temporary homeland where we must prepare ourselves for the greater Home that awaits us (Heb. 13:14):

I know the country I am living in is not really my true fatherland, and there is another I must long for without ceasing. This is not simply a story invented by someone living in the sad country where I am, but it is a reality, for the King of the Fatherland of the bright sun actually came and lived for thirty-three years in the land of darkness.(Story of a Soul, Manuscript C).

Heaven. Resurrection. Eternal Life. What we believe, what we hope for, is not merely some lofty philosophical ideal or the fantasy of uneducated simpletons. It is truth, Divinely revealed and able to be known through human reason (CCC 156-59). Therefore:

Be vigilant at all times
and pray that you have the strength
to escape the tribulations that are imminent
and to stand before the Son of Man. (Lk. 21:36)

So that when your day finally does come you will not be taken by surprise, for

at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come (Mt. 24:44)

Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May he rest in peace. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Dan Wheldon, Two Time Indy 500 Winner, Requescat In Pace

October 17th, 2011 at 5:33 pm
4 Responses to “R.I.P. Dan Wheldon: Husband, Father, Indy Racing Champion”
  1. 1
    Rolando Rodriguez, SFO Says:

    “Say what you want about the wisdom of driving a car at 220 MPH”

    I really don’t know what to say except that when I was having a grand old time in Key West, FL during the ’70′s, ’80′s and ’90′s, the accepted mantra was “live fast, die young, leave a good corpse.”

    Yes, please God, may we all rest in peace.

    Paz y Bien, Rolando, SFO.

  2. 2
    Mimi Says:

    Too the Wheldon Family. I am deeply sorry the pain hurts when someone you love soo dearly the pain like a broken glass that shaders every where. Too Dan s wife Susie please be strong in your heart you are pure your Sons need ya. Too all the Wheldon s I wish I can say more. All my prays gose out too you all. Mimi

  3. 3
    Annie Says:

    It is very unfortunate that this young man put his life on the line when he chose to race. It seems to me that his first concern should have been his wife and two babies. Reminds me of the teacher who died in the Shuttle blow-up many years ago. What in the world was she doing putting her life on the line for fame? Fatherhood and motherhood are too important and too precious to risk in such endeavors. Yes, people go to war every day, and they also leave families behind. Life is risky, but it seems that spouse and family should be # 1 in their plan of life. I will pray for this man and his family.

  4. 4
    Chelsea Says:

    Annie – read Frank Weathers’ post on Dan Wheldon’s death in which he addresses the dangerous aspect of IndyCar racing…and many other occupations: Dan Wheldon, Two Time Indy 500 Winner, Requescat In Pace Dan’s wife Susie was one of his biggest racing supporters, btw.

    I’m not saying you’re wrong, but deaths in racing are not really all that common. In fact, it is a testament to how safe they actually are in their cars that Dan was the only fatality, or even serious injury, in this incredible crash.

    Also, Operation Rescue’s Cheryl Sullenger notes that, if anyone is to blame, it’s IndyCar officials who have made the sport much more dangerous in the past year, especially this particular race, in order to boost ratings: Death of IndyCar Driver Dan Wheldon Shows No Respect for Life.