Aldo Andretti, twin brother of Mario, dies at 80

Aldo Andretti dies
Andretti Autosport/Indianapolis Monthly/Tony Valainis

Aldo Andretti, the twin brother of auto racing legend Mario Andretti and father of the late John Andretti, died Wednesday night at 80, according to a release from Andretti Autosport.

The IndyCar team said Aldo Andretti “passed peacefully with a heart full of love and spirit.”

In a tweet Thursday afternoon, Mario Andretti wrote that “Aldo Andretti, my loving twin brother, my partner in crime and my faithful best friend every day of my life was called to heaven last night. Half of me went with him. There is no eloquence. I’m shaken to my core.”

Aldo and Mario were born in Montona, Italy, and spent several years in a Tuscany refugee camp before immigrating with their family to the United States in 1955. Their father arrived in the country with $125 and a promise to stay for at least five years.

The Andretti twins soon began racing and winning on dirt ovals near their home in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania. Though Aldo Andretti’s driving career was cut short by a crash, he retained his passion for motorsports.

He often attended races to support his son John and many other family members who raced.

Aldo Andretti
Aldo Andretti (hand on helmet) helps congratulated USAC Sprint feature winner Bruce Walkup after a July 7, 1968 race at Dayton Speedway (Alvis Upitis/Getty Images).

John Andretti, a versatile winner in NASCAR, IndyCar, the Rolex 24 at Daytona and NHRA, died of colon cancer in January.

Pepsi 400 NASCAR Winston Cup race
Aldo Andretti in the pits before the July 2, 1994 race at Daytona International Speedway (Brian Cleary/Getty Images).

From the Andretti Autosport release: “Nothing mattered more to Aldo than family, and it brought him great pride to share his life with wife and high-school sweetheart Corky and their five children Carolyn, Mark, John, Mary Jo and Adam.”

Marco Andretti tweeted of his great uncle: “RIP uncle Aldo. One of the toughest guys I have ever met. I have never heard him complain, a trait that he passed down to John. Always so positive and upbeat and raised an amazing side of our Andretti family.”

According to the team, a Mass of Christian Burial will be held at noon, Jan. 13 at St. Malachy Catholic Church in Brownsburg, Indiana. A family visitation will be held from 4-7:30 p.m. Jan. 12, at Stevens Mortuary in Indianapolis.