226 Fallen Firefighters to be Honored at NASCAR Xfinity Series Race in Daytona, August 2024

May 9, 2024

Release and all photos taken by and thanks to Whelen, NASCAR, and Richard Childress Racing: We were extremely proud and honored to bring so many to our booth for the unveiling of the special paint scheme for the No. 2 Whelen Chevy Camaro honoring 226 firefighters who died in the line of duty, and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF).

Among those in attendance for the unveiling were Richard Childress Racing’s Jesse Love, driver of the No. 2 car, along with NFFF president, Victor Stagnaro; Editor in Chief for Fire & Rescue Media and Education Director for FDIC International, David Rhodes; Whelen CEO, Geoff Marsh, and members of the Whelen family.

FDIC is the biggest and best Fire and Rescue conference in the world, bringing tens of thousands of attendees to the Circle City each April for a week of classes, workshops and the showcasing of products and services from over 800 exhibiting companies. With so many people attending, as well as things to see and do, it can be difficult to stand out from the crowd. That’s one of the reasons why Whelen is always evaluating the experiences we offer at trade shows. We work hard to create a high-quality experience for attendees.

The unveiling took place in our booth on Thursday morning of FDIC week, shortly after the doors opened to the exhibit halls. A sizable crowd gathered in and around the booth to watch and a hush fell over them as the Fire Brigade Pipe & Drums appeared in single file in front of the No. 2 car and began to play Amazing Grace. Looking across the crowd while the familiar melody played, the emotion was palpable.

Whelen’s Director of Fire and EMS Sales, Matt Kehoe, welcomed those in attendance and talked about how supporting firefighters is an important part of Whelen’s mission and culture. Speeches were then made by David Rhodes and Victor Stagnaro, and the No. 2 car was unveiled to show a large NFFF logo on the hood of the vehicle, and the names of 226 firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2023 displayed prominently on the car’s deck lid (trunk). These firefighters were most recently honored at NFFF’s annual Memorial Weekend held May 4-5, in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

This special paint scheme will also be featured on the No. 2 car on August 23, 2024 at the NASCAR Xfinity race in Daytona Beach, Florida.

No. 2 driver, Jesse Love, hung out after the ceremony to take pictures with fans and sign hero cards. “We’re proud to support NFFF and honor those who have lost their lives in the line of duty,” Love said.

“First responders are the heartbeat of our communities and keep us safe daily. It will be special to carry the names of the fallen on our No. 2 Chevrolet, and hopefully we will be able to make their families smile with the recognition of their loved ones.”