Bob Daniels, R.I.P.

Robert M. Daniels 76, of Leesburg, FL died Saturday, June 30, 2007 at Leesburg Regional Medical Center.

Born in Marion, OH, he lived in Marysville, OH before moving to Indianapolis. Bob and his wife of 54 years, Eileen M. (Torbert), moved to Leesburg, FL in 1997.

Bob was a U.S. Navy veteran, life member of American Legion Post #879, Marysville, OH, and a former member of the Lake County Veterans Honor Guard. Bob was a commercial pilot with instrument rating and volunteered with Angel Flight in FL. He was Founder and President of the U.S.S. Salem Association.

Bob was one of the first employees of the National Hot Rod Association, for whom he worked his whole life, including as General Manager of Indianapolis Raceway Park, serving as a consultant, and working on special projects. He was responsible for bringing NASCAR to Indianapolis in 1982. Bob was awarded Promoter of the Year in 1988 by R.P.M., two time Promoter of the Year by U.S.A.C. He was a member of the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame, and received the N.H.R.A. Founder Award in 1991. Bob and Eileen received the Lifetime Achievement Award from N.H.R.A. in 2007, and he received the East Coast Drag Racing Hall of Fame Wally Parks Statesman of the Year award last week.

Survivors include his wife, Eileen, of Leesburg, FL; daughter, Diana M. (Richard) Jones of Indianapolis; son, David G. Daniels of Leesburg, FL; grandchildren, Rebecca and Jeffrey Jones of Indianapolis; a brother, Larry Daniels of Coatesville, IN.

Friends may call Thursday, July 5 from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday, July 6 from 10 a.m. until time of services at 12:30 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church of Clermont, Florida, 950 S. 7th St., Clermont, FL, with Rev. Doug Kokx officiating. Burial will follow at Florida National Cemetery, Busnell, with graveside military rites.

Memorials may be made to the Wally Parks Motorsports Museum, 1101 W. McKinley Ave., Bldg 3A, Pomona, CA 91768 or U.S.S. Salem Association, P.O. Box 493139. Leesburg, FL 34749.

Arrangements are being handled by Beyers Funeral Home and Crematory, Leesburg, FL.

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