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NASCAR'S Dick Trickle

Commits Suicide

Driver Left Suicide Note

5/16/2013 1:33 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Exclusive Details

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2:44 PM PT -- NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France just commented on Trickle's death ... saying, "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Dick Trickle on his passing today."

"Dick was a legend in the short-track racing community, particularly in his home state of Wisconsin, and he was a true fan favorite.  Personalities like Dick Trickle helped shape our sport. He will be missed."

2:28 PM PT -- We're told ... Trickle's body was removed from the cemetery and has been transported to a nearby hospital.

2:17 PM PT --
Multiple sources who knew Trickle tell us he had been sick for a while and depressed.  We're not sure what kind of illness Trickle had been suffering from.

1:51 PM PT --
Law enforcement sources tell TMZ ... Trickle did leave a suicide note at the death scene. The contents of the note are unclear at this time.

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Former NASCAR driver Dick Trickle is dead ... apparently having taken his own life with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.  He was 71 years old.

Cops in North Carolina say Trickle shot himself at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Lincoln County at 12:02 PM today.

0516-dick-trickle-cemetary-2-tmzOfficials say they received a phone call before the shooting in which the caller said there would be a dead body at the cemetery and it would be his.

Operators scrambled, trying to place a return call, but there was no answer.

When emergency responders arrived, they found Trickle's body near his pickup truck.

Trickle was a fan favorite in NASCAR -- often smoking cigarettes while he raced.



Dick won the NASCAR "Rookie of the Year" award in the Winston Cup in 1989, when he was 48 years old. 

Trickle was also beloved by the gang on "SportsCenter" -- Keith Olbermann and Dan Patrick used to almost always report his race results -- no matter how poorly he finished -- just because they were amused by his name.

Olbermann just tweeted ... "No sports figure Dan + I had fun with took it more graciously. In fact, gratefully."

He added, "Trickle helped mainstream NASCAR coverage on @SportsCenter We gave prominent attention to him, then his races, then ALL races."
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153 COMMENTS

No Avatar
76.

Don'tYaJustLuvIt?    

Dick Trickle...was he tricklin when they found da body?

493 days ago
77.

Don'tYaJustLuvIt?    

Don't care what the cir***stances might be, i.e., dick tricklin or whatever, man MUST not commit suicide...even if man's Dick Trickles. Nah... gon ahead ole Dick Tricklin fool!

493 days ago
78.

awesomewave    

Pretty sad news if you ask me.

493 days ago
79.

spader    

Pretty considerate doing it at a cemetery.

493 days ago
80.

BB not bb    

Why was he called Dick Trickle? That could be a depressing name in and of itself. It sounds like Kitty Drip or something.


You never know about these suicides that just happen out of the blue. Yeah someone could be depressed, but it takes a lot more to kill yourself. You never know if he had an enemy that just killed him and then left the note to throw people off.


I hate when people say their thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends. That is so canned. What does that even mean? It is like the auto response.


It could be annoying having people only interested in you as a serious competitor because they think that your name is goofy. Maybe he handled it graciously but inside it was burning him up. That happens with a lot of suicides, they seem gracious and grateful on the outside but inside they are miserable and resentful.


Why would he be grateful to have people reporting his poor showings and only because they wanted to laugh about his name? People can be so arrogant and self centered to think something like that.


This country is full of self centered asses. You have to learn to accept it and deal with it and not let it ruin your self esteem and do you in.

493 days ago
81.

BB not bb    

Do people really leave a note before committing suicide? Isn't that more of an impulsive decision to kill yourself? Lots of fake suicides are accompanied by a note. The Kurt Cobain suicide had a fake looking note in two different handwritings. Dzhokhar climbed out of the boat in tact, yet police claim he left a suicide note in the boat and then he wound up shot after her surrendered.


Sports is big business. Someone shady could have gotten involved with him and then wanted him dead. People bet on sports and that involves bookies and other underworld characters.

493 days ago
82.

BONES    

DICK TRICKLE - HELLAVA GUY WHO WAS A FAN FAVORITE - RIP DICK - GO NASCAR.

493 days ago
83.

TheTruth    

TMZ, where a new*** can be a new***.

493 days ago
84.

carmelita olaes    

ok thank you what lan ok

493 days ago
85.

John Bourbon    

RIP

493 days ago
86.

DTD    

"Dick Trickle"? Really?

493 days ago
87.

DebbieLakehurst    

I saw on the news yesterday, that he hadn't recovered from the death of his son, in 1990. Damn shame, I hate to see anyone suffer. His pain must have truly been unbearable. R.I.P.

493 days ago
88.

Mancherlass    

Condolences to the family. I can't believe he went through life with that name. Conjures nasty images to me. I definitely would have changed my name.

493 days ago
89.

Mancherlass    

My condolences to the family. I don't know how he went through life with that horrific name. Conjures hideous images. I definitely would have changed that name. RIP

493 days ago
90.

Tracey    

Very sad and signothorn I agree I bet he did have illness but still very sad and he knew what he was doing omg in cemetery yup that was a hint from him I bet this is where he wanted to be buried no family fight there just saying

493 days ago
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