Wisconsin Racer Honored With Final Run Down Drag Strip In Hearse

Illustration for article titled Wisconsin Racer Honored With Final Run Down Drag Strip In Hearse

Jerome Miller loved drag racing, running an AMC Concord until he was 56 and attending races religiously until his death. His family arranged to have his hearse make one final run down his home track — his casket on board.

Miller was a racer from the start, joining the ranks of drag racers in the 1950s and racing at various levels for forty years. He took time off to raise a family, and took his boys to the track on almost every weekend there was racing, lending a hand and talking cars with all who would have it. When the nest emptied, he ran an AMC Concord until an aneurysm limited his sight, and even then he kept going to the track, even attending the Labor Day races this year. He was considered a pillar of the racing community at Great Lakes Dragway in Union Grove, Wisconsin. He died last Tuesday, and as a fitting tribute, his family arranged to have the hearse bearing his casket take him on one last run down strip. The time wasn't great, 45 seconds at 27 mph, but a fellow racer, upon discovering what was going on, said "So they took him on his last pass. Cool. That's cool." We agree. (Thanks for the tip mytdawg)

[Kenosha News]

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I haven't been to Great Lakes Dragaway in well over a decade. I moved away 11 years ago, and hadn't been to the strip in several years prior to that. Even with all of those years, and the now 400 miles or so between the Dragaway and me, I feel somehow connected, and am proud to have ever been there.

It is just too cool of the track management to accomodate such a request. It was no doubt aided by knowing the man quite well, since he'd been going for so long, and lending a hand when he could. They still didn't have to do it.

And he has a wonderful family for understanding how important drag racing was to him, and figuring out a fitting send-off. Not a lot of families would do that.

Rest in Peace, Jerome Miller.