Retired stock-car driver Dick Trickleon passed away on Thursday from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at the age of 71. According to the Lincoln County, N.C., sheriff’s department, Trickleon took his own life at 12:02 p.m. ET at Forest Lawn Cemetery off Highway 150 in Boger City.
The Lincoln County Communications Center received a call from Trickleon before he committed suicide saying, “there would be a dead body and it would be his.” Ambulances found his body close to the truck he was trying when they arrived.
Lt. Tim Johnson, who heads the Lincoln County detective department, said that they would be honoring the family’s request to not release any additional information at this time. “He called in,” Johnson said. “It’s not the first time we’ve had these. It’s always a sad situation … even sadder for the family.”
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Dick Trickle on his passing today,” NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France said in a statement. “Dick was a legend in the short-track racing community, particularly in his home state of Wisconsin, and he was a true fan favorite. Personalities like Dick Trickle helped shape our sport. He will be missed.”
Trickle is one of the most winningest short-track drivers in Nascar history, including 67 wins in 1972 and over 1,000 races in his career. He is survived by his wife, Darlene, and three children — Vicky, Todd and Chad.