The Rochester (N.Y.) Democrat and Chronicle is now reporting that calling hours for fallen sprint car racer Kevin Ward Jr. will be on Wednesday and a funeral is set for Thursday.
According to the paper, visitation will be held on Wednesday afternoon and evening at the Trainor Funeral Home in Boonville, New York.
Ward’s funeral is scheduled for 11 a.m. local time on Thursday. However, funeral director Carl Trainor told the paper that because his funeral home isn’t large enough to hold the expected crowd, a venue for the funeral has yet to be finalized.
The paper’s report notes that they’re hoping to find a larger location “for mourners and vehicles” close to Ward’s hometown of Port Leyden, New York.
Ward, 20, a five-year veteran of the Empire Super Sprints series, lost his life on Saturday night when he was struck by the car of NASCAR star Tony Stewart during a sprint car race at Canandaigua (N.Y.) Motorsports Park.
As of now, the investigation remains ongoing, and on Sunday, Ontario County (N.Y.) Sheriff Philip Povero said that at this time, there is no evidence to suggest criminal intent from Stewart or any party involved in the accident.
Ward’s tragic death has shook the town of Port Leyden and surrounding communities as well.
“It’s tough; it will be tough here for a while,” local resident Randy Mooney said Sunday to the D&C. “Kevin hung out with the kids his age, he went swimming with the kids.”
Another local, Don Gydesen, added: “Everybody feels awful bad. Everybody around here knows Kevin.”
Earlier today, CMP announced that it was canceling its slate of races for Wednesday in the wake of the accident.
On Monday, the Formula 1 schedule finally allowed teams to be in Europe before heading to Abu Dhabi for this weekend’s season finale.
And as such, that provided a window for now four-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton to return to the Mercedes AMG Petronas factories in Brackley and Brixworth to be celebrated for taking the driver’s title, as Hamilton an Valtteri Bottas delivered Mercedes its fourth straight constructor’s title.
Hamilton was at Brixworth, the home of Mercedes-AMG High Performance Powertrains (HPP) and its highly successful Mercedes-Benz Power Units first before heading to Brackley, where he was welcomed with a “guard of honor” as the entire team came out to greet him.
The champion was overwhelmed at the response and the welcome.
“This a very emotional day. I was not expecting this, thanks everyone for the warm welcome,” he said. “Today is something that I will never forget, turning up at the front gate of the factory and seeing everyone out on the street to welcome me – I’m blown away.
“This has been an incredible year, it’s been an incredible journey together. There’s a huge amount of respect and appreciation I have for everyone. I’ve been in the sport for a long time now, but to see the work ethic in Brixworth and Brackley really inspires me. Every time I come around, I see everyone operating at 100%, which encourages me to bring my best performance.
“Thank you all for helping me achieve my dreams, it would not have been possible without you. This is the best championship year, because we’ve been fighting another team and because we’ve had the difficulties and challenges we’ve had – that just makes it so much greater.”
A social roundup of images and videos are below, all via Hamilton and the Mercedes team on social media.