|Gen. Sadler (L) with Bruton and Marcus Smith|
SCC officials surprised Sadler with the NASCAR Nationwide Series car, painted black with the SCC logo and “In Honor of General Sadler” across the hood. The car, which will be driven by NASCAR Nationwide Series driver Kyle Fowler, also has pink flames running down the side as part of Charlotte Motor Speedway’s “Pink Out” to raise awareness of the fight against breast cancer.
“I can’t say enough about Gen. Sadler. We have so many children out there and so many kids that rely on Speedway Children’s Charities every year,” said Marcus Smith, president and general manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway. “It’s a real privilege for us to be a part of helping children in need.”
Gen. Sadler was quick to share the credit for the success of SCC with Speedway Motorsports, Inc. (SMI) Chairman Bruton Smith and the many, many others who have worked alongside him over the years.
“Without this man right here, we would have never had a Speedway Children’s Charities. I mean it,” Sadler said. “I want to thank each and every one of you. You could not do more in your lifetime than to help a child in need. That’s what it’s all about – helping children in need.”
Gen. Sadler has served as executive director of SCC since 1990. Under his leadership, the organization raises funds for more than 400 children’s organizations nationwide each year, impacting more than 300,000 needy children annually. Since the organization was founded in 1982, Speedway Children’s Charities has raised more than $47 million and made a difference in the lives of more than 11.3 million children across the United States. The children who have been helped over the last 30 years would fill the stands of the eight SMI tracks more than nine times.
Before his work with SCC, Gen. Sadler served his country for more than 37 years in the U.S. Air Force. Sadler retired from the Air Force in 1983 as commander of the 21st Air Force at McGuire Air Force Base, commanding some 37,000 people in 70 locations in 15 countries on five continents. At the time of his retirement, he was the only general on active duty who had flown in combat in World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War, flying more than 400 combat missions.