The windshield headers on all 40 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series cars will be replaced with the names of fallen military service members during Sunday's Coca-Cola 600. The soldiers who will be honored (updated as additional details are known):
#1-Jamie McMurray - Spc. Benjamin Moore, U.S. Army
#2-Brad Keselowski - Keselowski's #2 Ford will carry the name of SSgt Nicholas Sprovtsoff (USMC, KIA) on the windshield. A fellow Michigan native, SSgt Sprovtsoff was killed in action in Helmand Province, Afghanistan on September 28, 2011, at the age of 28.
#3-Austin Dillon - The #3 team will feature Special Warfare Operator First Class SEAL Joshua Thomas Harris, a 36-year-old highly decorated combat veteran who drowned after being swept away by turbulent waters while conducting a river crossing during combat operations in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan in August 2008. A Lexington, N.C., native, Harris' family has become friendly with RCR and presented a 325-lb wine and whiskey barrel flag to Richard Childress, which is proudly displayed on the campus of RCR.
#4-Kevin Harvick - The name of Capt. Brent Morel of the United States Marine Corps will be featured on the #4 Mobil 1 Ford Fusion this weekend. Morel, who lived in McKenzie, Tennessee, was killed in action on April 7, 2004, when his platoon was ambushed during a reconnaissance mission in the Sunni Triangle in Fallujah, Iraq.
#5-Kasey Kahne - Staff Sergeant Joshua R. Hager from Denver, Colorado, will be honored on the windshield of the No. 5 Chevrolet SS this weekend at Charlotte. Hager was born on June 20, 1977, and enlisted in the Army in 1998. He received numerous awards including Audie Murphy, a Bronze Star and Purple Heart. While serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom, Hager was killed by an IED on Feb. 23, 2007. Hager's father, Kris, will be in attendance at Charlotte Motor Speedway this weekend.
#6-Trevor Bayne - The name of 2nd Lieutenant Peter Burks of the United States Army will adorn the windshield of the #6 Roush Fenway Ford. Peter Haskell Burks was born on April 10, 1981 in Atlanta, Ga. and was a graduate of the Trinity Christian Academy and Texas A&M University. After graduation from college, Burks worked as a tour guide in Nice, France before returning stateside to work for the Dallas Cowboys, the Dallas Desperados and FC Dallas. Burks joined the United States Army in 2006 where he went to the Officer Candidate School. He was deployed to Iraq as part of "Operation Iraqi Freedom" in the summer of 2007 where he was assigned to the 4th Squadron, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment. Burks was killed in action on Nov. 14, 2007 as a result of wounds sustained when his vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device just outside of the Green Zone in Baghdad.
#7-J.J. Yeley - In honor of Memorial Day, LCpl Alejandro J "Poncho" Yazzie of the United States Marine Corps will be riding on board the Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet. LCpl Yazzie was a member of the 1st Combat Engineer Battalion out of Camp Pendleton, California, and was killed in action in 2010 in Afghanistan.
#10-Danica Patrick - Lance Cpl. Scott Harper, U.S. Marines
#11-Denny Hamlin - Hamlin's #11 FedEx Office Toyota Camry will feature a special name on the windshield for this weekend's Coca-Cola 600. This Memorial Day Weekend, as part of the NASCAR Salutes: 600 Miles of Remembrance program, each team will pay tribute to a fallen soldier. The #11 Camry will honor Army Air Corps Corporal John Harrison Kenner Jr. of Franklin, N.C., who was killed when his plane was shot down during his return trip from a bombing mission over the Polesti oil fields in Romania on August 17th, 1944. Members of Keener's family will be in attendance for Sunday's race.
#13-Ty Dillon - As Part of the 600 Miles of Remembrance, We Salute Corporal Nathaniel Hammond, April 29, 1980 - November 8, 2004. Nathan was passionate about his family and his country. He was a Marine reserve when the Twin Towers were hit. He immediately changed his status to active and started training to go to Iraq. He wanted to learn the language and this was part of his training. He experienced frustration only when they did not send him soon enough. He went to Iraq as a non-commissioned officer because he wanted to go as soon as possible. The day he died, he was assigned to Weapons Co. as a member of one of three mobile strike teams. He was the first one out of the vehicle to secure the area when a remote detonated bomb went off, taking his life. He died doing what he wanted to do - serving his country - as a hero.
#14-Clint Bowyer - The #14 will honor Army Staff Sgt. Terry D. Wagoner, 28, of Pelzer, South Carolina, who along with two others, died in Baghdad, Iraq in 2007 from wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle during combat operations. Wagoner was assigned to the 6th Squadron, 9th U.S. Cavalry, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. Wagoner was in his second Iraq tour when he was killed. Wagoner ran track in high school and followed a tradition of five uncles serving in the military.
#15-Reed Sorenson - Reed Sorenson will proudly display SPC BARTON across the windshield of his No.15 Chevrolet SS. SPC Barton, whose full name is Christopher Ryan Barton served in the United States Army from Harrisburg, NC. SPC Christopher Barton joined the Army on December 30, 2008 as an Infantryman. Christopher was raised right outside of Charlotte, in Harrisburg, NC and graduated from Central Cabarrus High School in 2006. SPC Barton died May 24, 2010, when insurgents attacked his unit using small arms fire in the Khowst Province, Afghanistan. Christopher is survived by his wife, Heather Barton, His parents, Roy & Elaine Schmiedeshoff, two brothers Cory Barton and Bryan Schmiedeshoff.
#17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr - LCpl Taylor B. Prazynski will replace 'Stenhouse Jr' on the windshield of the #17 Ford. LCpl. Taylor B. Prazynski was born on Veterans Day in 1984 at Hill Air Force Base in Utah, the son of a staff sergeant, and lived his first four years on bases in Utah and Illinois. The family moved to Fairfield, where Taylor adopted The Army Goods Store on Dixie Highway as his favorite hangout. Since 1990 the store has hung a picture of six-year old Taylor, in a beret and camouflage jumpsuit, on a wall behind the counter. Prazynski left in January 2005 for Iraq, and passed away on Monday, May 9, while fighting alongside his U.S. Marine Corps battalion. He was 20 years old.
#18-Kyle Busch - Busch has the honor of displaying the name of PFC William Johnson on his M&M'S Red, White, and Blue Toyota. PFC Johnson, a native of Oxford, North Carolina, lost his life in Iraq in 2007. Belanger, who was serving with the U.S. Army Reserves, died when an improvised explosive struck his convoy vehicle. Belanger, who was from Deerfield, Mass., but was living in Narragansett, R.I., at the time of his death, was the first soldier from Rhode Island to die in Iraq since the start of U.S.-led military operations there. He was just 24 years old.
#19-Daniel Suarez - Staff Sgt. Christopher W. Swanson, U.S. Army
#20-Matt Kenseth - Spc. Jeffrey P. Shaffer, U.S. Army
#21-Ryan Blaney - The #21 Fusion will carry the name of the late U.S. Army Sgt. Gregory Belanger, who was killed on Aug. 27, 2003, in Hallia, Iraq, during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
#22-Joey Logano - Master Sgt. Anthony Ray Charles Yost, U.S. Army
#23-Gray Gaulding - Gaulding's #23 Toyota will carry the name of Sgt Richard Hrbek (USMC, KIA) on the windshield. A native of New Jersey, Sgt Hrbek was serving his fourth combat tour when he was killed in action in Helmand Province, Afghanistan on January 14, 2010, at the age of 25.
#24-Chase Elliott - Elliott's windshield will bear the name of U.S. Army Captain Todd Tyler Christmas as part of the NASCAR Salutes initiative. Christmas was born March 8, 1978, in Las Vegas, New Mexico. He graduated from the New Mexico Military Institute and Texas A&M University, where he was the distinguished military graduate in August 2001. After attending the United States Army Airborne School at Fort Benning, Georgia, where he was awarded the parachutists badge, he joined the 1st Battalion, 44th Air Defense Artillery Regiment. While in the battalion, Christmas served as an avenger platoon leader, linebacker platoon leader and battery executive officer while deployed in support of Iraqi Freedom. In June 2004, he was selected to serve as the aide de camp for Brigadier General Charles Allen, the assistant division commander (Support). Christmas passed away on Nov. 29, 2004 -- he was traveling in a Blackhawk helicopter when it collided with a guy wire near Waco, Texas, killing all aboard. Christmas' parents, Becky and Brad, will both be in attendance this weekend at Charlotte.
#27-Paul Menard - Lloyd Tussey, Petty Officer 3rd Class; Electrician's Mate 3rd Class served on the USS Arizona, based in Honolulu, Hawaii. Tussey lost his life in battle during the Japanese raid on Pearl Harbor that fateful day on December 7, 1941. He received the following awards: Purple Heart, American Campaign Medal, World War II Victory Medal and Combat Action Ribbon. Tussey's nephew Troy works at RCR as a Cup Series mechanic and will be at the race Sunday along with family to honor his Great Uncle.
#31-Ryan Newman - The #31 team will be honoring Lance Corporal Daniel Freeman Swaim of the United States Marine Corps. Swaim is the cousin of Cruz Gonzales, gas man on the Grainger Chevrolet team. Swaim served in the 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. On November 10, 2005, he passed away from wounds sustained from an improvised explosive device while conducting combat operations against enemy forces during Operation Steel Curtain in Karabilah, Iraq.
#32-Matt DiBenedetto - Cpl. Riley Baker will be represented on the #32 Cosmo Motors Ford Fusion during the Coca-Cola 600. Marine Cpl. Riley E. Baker was killed in action while serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2006. Cpl. Baker was a member of the 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, from Camp LeJeune, N.C.; He passed away June 22, 2006 while conducting combat operations in Ramadi, Iraq.
#33-Jeffrey Earnhardt - Cpl. Aaron D. Gautier, U.S. Army
#34-Landon Cassill - The decal across the top of the windshield of the Ford Fusion will display the name of Pvt. Michael Murdock of Chocowinity, N.C., killed in Afghanistan on Sept. 11, 2008. The 22-year-old was on his first deployment when his base was attacked by enemy fire. His unit was based out of Ford Hood, Texas.
#37-Chris Buescher - Navy SEAL/Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Jason Lewis, U.S. Navy
#38-David Ragan - The camouflage-schemed Jacob Companies Ford Fusion will carry the name of Petty Officer 1st Class Michael Strange, who was killed in Afghanistan on Aug. 6, 2011. The 25-year-old Philadelphia native was a Navy Cryptologist Technician based with an East-Coast SEAL team. He died from wounds suffered when his Chinook helicopter was shot down during a mission in Operation Enduring Freedom. Petty Officer Strange had numerous decorations, including two Joint Service Commendation Medals and the Joint Service Achievement Medal.
#41-Kurt Busch - Sgt. Robert S. Matern, U.S. Marines
#42-Kyle Larson - Spc. David Taylor, U.S. Army
#43-Regan Smith - The #43 Air Force Ford will bear the name of Senior Airmen Mark Forester, a combat controller killed in action in Afghanistan. He was deployed to Forward Operating Base Cobra as a Combat Controller in May 2010 and awarded the Bronze Star Medal with Valor for his heroic actions while engaged in ground combat against the enemy on August 6, 2010. Forester was fatally wounded during combat on September 29, 2010. He was posthumously awarded the Silver Star for his actions during that fateful battle, and the Purple Heart for paying the ultimate price for freedom. He was killed in action alongside one of his Special Forces teammates. JAG 28, which was his call sign and the only name many pilots knew him by, was immediately retired after his death.
#47-AJ Allmendinger - This Memorial Day weekend, the #47 Chevrolet SS team is humbled to honor Specialist Douglas J. Green by displaying his name on AJ Allmendinger's windshield. Spc. Green's credentials included U.S. Army 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Fort Wainwright, Alaska. He was serious about his job and protecting others, but he also had an endearing side. Green was well known for his sense of humor and having the ability to ease others in times of stress with jokes and light banter to evoke laughter or a smile. On August 28, 2011, at 23 years of age, Spc. Green tragically lost his life serving his second tour of duty in Afghanistan. He was killed in action when insurgents attacked his unit using a makeshift bomb and small arms fire. He was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for valor, posthumously, the Purple Heart, Army Commendation Medal, and the Combat Infantryman Badge.
#48-Jimmie Johnson - The #48 Lowe's Chevrolet will carry the name of fallen Army Paratrooper SPC Michael Rodriguez. Last week, Johnson made the trek to Fort Bragg near Fayetteville, North Carolina, to unveil the special paint scheme as well as meet the family of SPC Rodriguez. A native of Sanford, North Carolina, and assigned to the 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, SPC Rodriguez was 20 when he was killed on April 23, 2007, while serving his country in Iraq. For his bravery and sacrifice, SPC Rodriguez earned the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Combat Action Badge and Good Conduct Medals.
#51-Timmy Hill - Sgt. 1st Class Matthew Sluss-Tiller, U.S. Army
#55-Derrike Cope - Derrike Cope will proudly display the name 'SSG Eggleston' across the windshield of his No.55 Toyota Camry. SSG Eggleston, whose full name is Brandon Forrest Eggleston served in the United States Army from Eden, NC. Army Staff Sergeant Brandon Forrest Eggleston, 29, of Raeford, N.C. was killed when his vehicle struck an improvised explosive device during a patrol on April 26, 2012 in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to Company B, 4th Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, N.C. and was deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Brandon, a 2005 graduate of Western Carolina University, enlisted in the Army in July, 2006. Upon completion of basic training and follow-on individual training, he attended the Special Forces Assessment and Selection Course. He completed the Special Forces Qualification Course in March, 2009 and was assigned to his unit at Fort Bragg. Staff Sgt. Eggleston was on his third deployment at the time of his death. Eggleston's awards and decorations include the Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghan Campaign Medal with two campaign stars, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, Non-commissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon with numeral 2 device, Army Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Parachutist Badge, and the Special Forces tab. He was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Purple Heart, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with a third campaign star and the Combat Infantry Badge.
#72-Cole Whitt - TriStar Motorsports and Cole Whitt are honored to participate in the NASCAR Salutes program and will proudly display the name of Sergeant First Class Paul Drasutis of the Army National Guard on the windshield of the RTIC Coolers #72. Paul was born in Shreveport, Louisiana on May 12, 1965, he was the son of the late Harry and Paulette (Slusser) Drasutis who survives him of Pensacola, Florida. Paul graduated from B.T. Washington High School in Pensacola, FL. He was also a graduate of Louisiana State University. Paul was employed as a supervisor at General Motors serving several different plants including the Defiance Plant over his 15 year career. SFC Drasutis was about to retire from a 30 year military career having served in the Marine Corps, Air Force reserve and the Army National Guard. He served two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan. He was a member of St. John Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus, VFW Post #3360 and a life member of AMVETS Post #1991.Paul was an avid hunter, passionate pilot and expert fisherman. His love for adventure and the outdoors was a tradition passed to him by his father, Harry. Paul hoped to instill that enthusiasm in his stepson, Andrew. His pride and joy was his bulldog, Benny, who he affectionately called "his boy."
#77-Erik Jones - Jones and #77 5-hour ENERGY Toyota team will honor the late Lance Cpl. Matthias N. Hanson as part of NASCAR's "600 Miles of Remembrance" program. Hanson, of Buffalo, Ky., was assigned to the 3rd Batallion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force based at Camp Lejeune, N.C. Born Jan. 26, 1990 at the U.S. Army Hospital in Nuremberg, Germany, Hanson was a 2008 graduate of LaRue County (Ky.) High School where he was a member of the varsity football team and the Technology Student Association. He died Feb. 21, 2010 while supporting combat operations in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.
#78-Martin Truex Jr - 2nd Lt. John C. Yates, whose name will grace the windshield of Martin Truex Jr.'s race car during Sunday night's Memorial Day weekend classic - the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway - was an exemplary Marine who portrayed courage, unselfishness, leadership and patriotism while serving three tours of duty during the Vietnam War. Yates of Fergus Falls, Minn. was killed in action during a heroic maneuver to save the life of a fellow comrade on Oct. 17, 1968 in the Vietnam province of Quang Tri. He was 26 at the time of his death.
#83-Corey LaJoie - LaJoie's #83 Toyota will carry the name Capt Brandon "Bull" Barrett (USMC, KIA) on the windshield. A native of New Mexico, Capt Barrett was a 2006 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy prior to joining the Marine Corps. On May 5, 2010, Capt Barrett was killed in action in Helmand Province, Afghanistan at the age of 27.
#88-Dale Earnhardt Jr - Earnhardt, Jr's name will be replaced with the name of Private First Class James McClamrock. As part of NASCAR's 600 Miles of Remembrance program, all 40 drivers will honor United States Armed Forces members who have fallen in service for their country. PFC McClamrock, who hailed from Huntersville, North Carolina, was killed by an insurgent at Balad Air Base in Iraq on Sept. 7, 2010, while preparing to leave for a mission. Earnhardt and Nationwide have invited PFC McClamrock's family, including his mother Susan, to attend the race as their guests. The McClamrock family are friends of a few of Nationwide's Military Associate Resource Group (MARG) members in Raleigh, North Carolina. When Nationwide heard PFC's James McClamrock's story, the Nationwide MARG thought the 600 Miles of Remembrance program would be a perfect way to remember his sacrifice.
#95-Michael McDowell - Leavine Family Racing (LFR) and Michael McDowell are honored to race the Coca-Cola 600 with fallen SPC Nick Newby on board the #95 WRL Chevrolet SS.