Originally written on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 11/18/14
This Sunday, America’s most famous race track will hold its annual NASCAR race in Indianapolis, Indiana. Ironically, it’s no longer called “The Brickyard 400.” Instead, the Samuel Deeds 400 at the Brickyard will commence Sunday afternoon, confusing both hardcore NASCAR fans and casual observers alike. NASCAR’s most popular races can usually be referred to with one word: Daytona, Talledega, Bristol, etc. And to this day, the race in Indy remains one of the most coveted titles to earn on the circuit. Just this week, Dale Earnhardt Jr. talked about how much he wanted to bend over and kiss the bricks for the first time. In the grand scheme of things, it seems a little counter-intuitive for NASCAR to make “The Brickyard” part of the title an afterthought. And then there is Crown Royal, the actual sponsor of the event. For years, beverage companies like Coca-Cola and Pepsi have sponsored NASCAR events and turned their races into national brands. What do you make of a company that spends enough money to sponsor one of the biggest events in NASCAR, only to practically leave its name completely off the title entirely? The deal is that this weekend is all about Samuel Deeds, a real American hero. For several years now, Crown Royal has been sponsoring the “Your Name Here” race, first in Richmond and now in Indy. NASCAR fans from across the globe are able to submit candidates that they think are worthy of having an entire race named after them. When you hear a little bit about Samuel Deeds, you will understand why NASCAR and Crown Royal have so generously given him the spotlight this weekend. So who is Samuel Deeds? Via NASCAR.com, While deployed in Iraq, Deeds came across an improvised explosive device (IED) while setting up a vehicle checkpoint. Upon seeing fellow Marines approaching, he exposed himself to the device, risking his own life to save others. He was severely injured and underwent more than 30 surgeries and procedures following the blast. Three years later, while still recovering, Deeds’ heroic instincts took charge once again when he saved the lives of three individuals caught in a rip tide off the coast of North Carolina. We throw around the “hero” word a lot in sports. NASCAR drivers exhibit great bravery in driving around a track at 190 MPH. NFL kickers are viewed as heroic when they make 50-yard field goals to win playoff games after getting “iced” by opposing coaches. Olympians are national heroes for shaving one-tenth of a second off of their time. And yet, in our wonderful country, there are heroes like Samuel Deeds who go unrecognized every single day of the week. Ironically, marines like Samuel Deeds would never ask for this type of attention themselves. Two years ago, I was privileged to meet Matthew Hansen, a Marine whose brother died in Afghanistan and still went back to serve several tours overseas. Matthew and his brother had the race in Richmond named after them, and NASCAR was able to honor them for the weekend. Of course, Matthew was humbled by the entire experience, and kept repeating that he was NOT a hero and that he was no different from the countless men he left behind in Iraq. This weekend when I meet Mr. Deeds, I expect the same outcome. I hope to look into the eyes of an American hero and not break down in tears from gratitude. I hope to be able to tell him thank you for his service for our country. And I hope for just one weekend that he really will allow himself to be honored. But I expect he won’t. Marines just aren’t built that way. He would never ask for this honor in a million years. In the same way that it was most likely a no-brainer for Samuel to throw himself on a bomb in order to protect his fellow-soldiers, he will in no way, shape, or form desire this type of recognition. Which is why NASCAR and Crown Royal are choosing to do it. Thank you, Samuel Deeds, for your unbelievable service. Thank you, NASCAR and Crown Royal, for honoring him. And thank you, soldiers everywhere, for fighting and giving your lives so that we could have the opportunity to watch a silly little race this weekend. The post Samuel Deeds – An American Hero appeared first on Midwest Sports Fans.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Phillies GM told Ryan Howard team is better off without him

Report: Browns interested in drafting Marcus Mariota

Chargers keep playoff hopes alive with comeback win

Robin Lopez responds to Khloe Kardashian dating rumors

Report: Jermaine O'Neal 'intrigued' about joining Mavs

Report: Robert Griffin III likely to return to Redskins

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Izzo criticizes coaches, players after embarrassing loss

Report: Kings, Nets talking Deron Williams trade

Is Rampage Jackson heading back to the UFC?

WATCH: DeSean Jackson mocks Eagles after win

Michael Vick: Jameis Winston is the future of the NFL

Report: No NFL team is moving to Los Angeles in 2015

Five things we learned from the first day of bowl games

WATCH: South Alabama coach bloodied after kick to the face

Dan Mullen wears funny 'Christmas Vacation' sweater

WATCH: Redskins FB gets in Eagles fan's face after TD

WATCH: Utah runs trick play on first offensive play of game

Mick Cronin misses game with unruptured aneurysm

Steve Alford: Kentucky is best team I've coached against

Peyton Siva jokes that Rick Pitino is in the mob

WATCH: Montrezl Harrell ejected for throwing punch

UNC wearing Jordan-era throwback uniforms

Brian Kelly: Justin Brent gets 'distracted,' is in my doghouse

Five free agent signings that should happen in 2015

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Browns interested in drafting Mariota?

Mullen wears funny Christmas sweater

RG3 returning to Redskins?

Tom Izzo hot after bad loss

Kings, Nets talking Deron Williams trade

WATCH: DeSean mocks Eagles

Vick: Winston is the future of the NFL

No NFL team in LA next season?

UNC rocking Jordan-era throwbacks

Reporter asks Rondo awkward question

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

Jon Lester and the Cubs

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.