87-year-old dies in Texas Speedway crash
An 87-year-old World War II veteran who eagerly anticipated a fast ride around Texas Motor Speedway died after the car he was in blew a tire and crashed into a wall at the Fort Worth track, officials said Tuesday.
Fred Donald Krusemark of Dallas died of blunt force trauma to the head and neck early Monday, two days after the accident, said Troy Taylor of the Denton County Medical Examiner’s Office.
There was no indication whether Krusemark was wearing a seat belt when the blowout caused the driver to lose control of the car, Taylor said.
The driver was in critical condition Tuesday at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth, hospital spokeswoman Whitney Jodry said.
Krusemark chose the ride-along experience as a reward for being a blood donor, Carter BloodCare spokeswoman Linda Goelzer said. Krusemark contacted the organization’s event coordinator “several times to make sure he was on the list, and he was excited about coming,” Goelzer said.
The Krusemark family declined to comment Tuesday beyond a previous statement lauding the Navy veteran as a “wonderful father, grandfather and great-grandfather.”
“We lost our family patriarch,” the statement said.
The owner of the company running the ride-along program, Texas Driving Experience, didn’t return a phone call from seeking comment. Dawn Stokes operates the company out of an office at the speedway.
Texas Motor Speedway officials had no comment because the accident involved an unaffiliated company that was leasing the track, spokesman Mike Zizzo said.
The 1.5-mile high-banked track in rural northern Fort Worth is the site of two races each year in NASCAR’s top racing series. The track also has an IndyCar Series race every June. Texarkana Gazette