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NASCAR Racer Visits Pentagon

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Stock Car Racing Topics:  Mike Wallace

NASCAR Racer Visits Pentagon

Walter T. Ham IV, Chief of Naval Operations Public Affairs and David Raffaele, Naval Media Center
U.S. Navy
November 21, 2002

U.S. Navy Story NNS021121-01

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- At the invitation of Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Vern Clark, NASCAR driver Mike Wallace recently made a high-visibility pit stop at the Pentagon.

Wallace, who competes in the NASCAR Winston Cup series, is also a veteran of the ARCA stock car competition, the Craftsmen Truck series and the Busch racing series. He signed photographs for a steady stream of race fans during a two-hour signing session on the Pentagon concourse. He then toured the massive five-sided military headquarters building, greeting fans along the way.

Wallace has shown his support for the Navy before.

Following the Oct. 12 terrorist attack that claimed the lives of 17 Sailors on USS Cole (DDG 67), Wallace got permission from the CNO to display a tribute that read “In memory of the Sailors on the USS Cole” on his Craftsmen Series truck at a race in California. He later spent three days aboard USS Enterprise (CVN 65).

Wallace said that he was pleased with the opportunity to meet service members and tour their headquarters.

“I don’t think everyone in America realizes how fortunate we are,” Wallace added. “My family and I are very appreciative of what not just Sailors, but all military personnel are doing for the freedom of this country.

“I respect all the military personal immensely for every part and everything they do, and I just want to say thanks,” he said.

Yeoman 3rd Class Jonathan L. Wyatt said he was thrilled to meet Wallace.

“I think it’s great that somebody like Mr. Wallace takes time out of his busy schedule to come out here and visit with us, and sign autographs. … And he gets to see what we do,” Wyatt said. “It’s a great situation for both of us.”

According to the CNO, Wallace's visit was just another example of the overwhelming support the military enjoys around the nation.

“Our Sailors so appreciate when they are appreciated – especially when people like Mike Wallace give of themselves to show their support,” the CNO said.

For more on the CNO, go to www.chinfo.navy.mil/navpalib/cno.

Mike Wallace Visits Pentagon U.S. Navy photo by Johnny Bivera
November 5, 2002
U.S. Army Honor Guard, Specialist Camille Adams, a Pentagon tour guide, shows visiting NASCAR race driver Mike Wallace a new painting depicting the first fighter aircraft responding to the attack on the Pentagon, September 11, 2001. Mike Wallace flew in from North Carolina to spend a day visiting with members of the U.S. Armed Forces, as a gesture of his support for the military.
View photo of Mike Wallace, 3,412KB
Mike Wallace Visits Pentagon U.S. Navy photo by Johnny Bivera
November 5, 2002
Adm. Vern Clark, Chief of Naval Operations, enjoys an office call with visiting NASCAR race driver Mike Wallace (left), his daughter Lindsey, and wife Carla, along with NASCAR writer Tim Pacman. Mike Wallace flew in from North Carolina to spend a day visiting with members of the U.S. Armed Forces, as a gesture of his support for the military.
View photo of Mike Wallace, 3,772KB
Mike Wallace Visits Pentagon U.S. Navy photo by Johnny Bivera
November 5, 2002
U.S. Navy Yeoman 3rd Class Jonathan Wyatt of Colorado Springs, Colo., gets an autographed photo from NASCAR race driver Mike Wallace in the main concourse of the Pentagon. Mike Wallace flew in from North Carolina for the day to visit with members of the U.S. Armed Forces as a show of support to the military and spent up to three hours signing autographs at the Pentagon.
View photo of Mike Wallace, 3,759KB



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