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Dale Earnhardt Sr.: NASCAR’s Own Classic Version of “American Pie”

On a cold winter's night back on Feb. 3, 1959, a small private plane took off from Clear Lake, Iowa, bound for Fargo, N.D. It never made its destination. When that plane crashed, it claimed the lives of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, J.P. "Big Bopper" Richardson, and the pilot, Roger Peterson. Three of rock and roll's most promising performers were gone. As Don McLean wrote in his classic music parable "American Pie," it was "the day the music died. " Throughout the years, the world of sports and entertainment has seen its share of fallen heroes, those who in one way or another touched the lives of those around them. Whether in person or watching on our television sets, these legends were the backbone of the culture in which we grew up. Many ...

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