So last night over dinner, we (Mr. Brown Eyes, my mom, and myself) were discussing my youth. I guess you might say I wasn't a party animal as a teenager. It really wasn't something that really appealed to me. Wasn't really interested in beer or parties or that sort of thing. Didn't care if you did, but it just didn't work for me. Wasn't interested in being popular or any of that stuff. What was I so busy doing that I wasn't interested in the other stuff? Racing!
Our family has a history with cars - more specific I'd say stock cars. On Friday nights and sometimes Saturday nights too we'd all go to the race track in our home town. My uncles - Ron, Richard & Gary got together and got into racing. Eventually my dad joined the crew as well. Richard was head mechanic - he could make anything fast - the two tone Chevy you see won many trophies drag racing. The ones in the photo below are just a tiny fraction of the trophies he accumulated over the years drag racing.
Once we moved into stock racing, my grandfather's construction company became the sponsor of the car. The #35 was one of the first entries into the world of stock car racing. I believe the driver of that first car was a friend of my uncles - Bud Olsen.
The third photo down is a photo of my grandfather, Ray Phillips, with two of my uncles and my dad with the #35.
Fourth photo down was one my personal favorite stock cars, it was the bright yellow (yeah I know its a black and white photo!) #12. Many awesome photo's with checkered flags and that car. This one has my favorite driver, my uncle Ron Radley posing with a checkered flag after one of his many wins.
The fifth photo down is of my cousin Brian Phillips as a very young child posing in the bright red #24. I don't have as many memories of the #24. But I do remember the hours my uncles spent making these race cars fly, and how proud we were of them when they took that checkered flag!
Many happy hours were spent at those race tracks and I'm so glad that we as a family spent that time making those memories. The entire family there in the stands (the ones that weren't in the pits with the cars), the bags of peanuts we shared, the shells everywhere, ice cold pepsi's we shared... most of all the sense of family that it instilled in us and finally the memories we have.
My uncle Ron Radley passed away several years ago - but every time I see a stock car on a trailer headed for the race track I think of him - the checkered flags, the sound of those engines. My kids think I'm crazy when I go to the Woodward Dream Cruise and I actually enjoy the sound of those big engines. Now they know where that comes from. Thanks Ron, Richard, Gary, Dad and the rest of the crew for the memories! After all, families is what Family History is all about!