The NASCAR world is in mourning after it was announced that driver Eric McClure died on Sunday. He was 42 years-old.
“The family of Eric Wayne McClure, former NASCAR driver, announces with great sorrow his passing on Sunday,” his family said in a statement obtained by the Associated Press. “They would like to thank everyone for their prayers and support during this very difficult time.”
NASCAR also released a brief statement about his death, saying, “We are saddened to learn of the passing of former driver and (team) owner Eric McClure. NASCAR extends its deepest condolences to Eric’s family and friends.”
We are saddened to learn of the passing of former driver and owner Eric McClure. NASCAR extends its deepest condolences to Eric’s family and friends. pic.twitter.com/378S81SPx2
— NASCAR (@NASCAR) May 2, 2021
No additional details about McClure’s death were given, and his autopsy is still pending at this time.
McClure’s fiancé Keira Brinegar Tibbs paid tribute to the late NASCAR star on social media.
“Eric, I will love you until my last breath…. please wait for me until then,” Tibbs said. “I love you more.”
McClure, who was the nephew of former Cup team owner Larry McClure, spent of his career in the Xfinity Series, with his last race being in 2016. His best finish came in 2013, when he came in eighth at the Xfinity Series season opener in Daytona.
McClure was open about his health struggles in the past, revealing in 2013 that he had been diagnosed with acute renal failure. He also suffered multiple concussions during his time in NASCAR, and in 2019, he revealed that he was being treated for kidney failure.
Tributes have been pouring in for McClure on social media since his passing was announced.
“Really saddened and shocked to hear about Eric McClure. Praying for his family in this time. RIP Eric,” tweeted racer Jeremy Clements.
“Really saddened to hear about the loss of @ericmcclure today. Helped me get a start in NASCAR. Will always cherish our success & these memories. RIP friend,” added Austin Cindric, who won the 2020 Xfinity Series championship.
Really saddened and shocked to hear about Eric McClure. Praying for his family in this time. RIP Eric
— Jeremy Clements (@JClements51) May 2, 2021
— Austin Cindric (@AustinCindric) May 2, 2021
The Roanoke Times reported that last year, McClure pleaded no contest to a 2018 misdemeanor domestic violence charge that was made against him by his estranged wife. He was then sentenced to 12 months of supervised probation, anger management classes and mental health and substance abuse assessments.
McClure leaves behind his seven children.