Dan Wheldon, the IndyCar racer who died Oct. 16 in a massive 15-car crash, was honored Saturday at a funeral attended by hundreds in St. Petersburg, Fla.
The funeral took place at 10 a.m. at the First Presbyterian Church. A public memorial will follow at 4 p.m. on Sunday at the Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
Though we won't be able to fit everyone inside, I know that Dan would have wanted the community to share in the celebration of his life and to grieve his passing, his wife, Susie Wheldon, said in a statement.
A two-time Indianapolis 500 champion, Wheldon died from blunt force trauma to the head as a result of the horrific crash during lap 15 of the 2011 IZOD IndyCar World Championship at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Wheldon's car flew over another vehice and landed in a catch fence outside Turn Two.
Wheldon was airlifted to Las Vegas' University Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Drivers J.R. Hildebrand and Pippa Mann were also injured, but only stayed at the hospital overnight before being released.
Wheldon, 33, left behind two sons in addition to his wife Susie: Sebastian, 2, and Oliver, 7 months.
Wheldon's death has stirred controversy as to whether or not 34 cars should be traveling at speeds beyond 220 miles per hour at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. IndyCar says Formula One's governing body, Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), and the Automobile Competition Committee of the United States will assist in a full investigation of the crash and the safefy of the racetrack.