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NASCAR pit crew member and wife killed in accident on the way to celebrate their honeymoon

"Rowdy shared his love with the people around him and was loved in return. Although he will be greatly missed, his memory will continue to inspire us always."
Credit: Twitter: Alex Bowman

CONCORD, N.C. — Hendrick Motorsports team member William "Rowdy" Harrell and his wife Blakley have died after an accident in Florida Tuesday night, Hendrick Motorsports confirmed.

The newlywed couple was on the way to their honeymoon and had just married on Saturday, Nov. 21.

In a release, NASCAR said Harrell had been with Hendrick Motorsports as a mainstay on the pit crew for the last eight seasons, most recently in the NASCAR Cup Series on the No. 88 Chevrolet team for Alex Bowman. 

Bowman posted a tribute to Rowdy on his Twitter, saying he will be missed every day.

"Rowdy was everything that made the 88 team, the 88 team," the tweet said. "The biggest personality and the best person. He was the happiest person you’d ever meet, and that was only [reinforced] by his wife Blakley. Rip to an absolute legend. You’ll be missed every single day brother."

Greg Ives, who was Harrell’s crew chief for six seasons, told Hendrick Motorsports the entire team was devastated at the loss. 

“They were such positive, giving and passionate people who could not have been a more perfect match," Ives' statement said, in part. "Rowdy had an energetic and infectious personality. He was the heart and soul of our team and always kept us motivated, no matter the circumstance. Rowdy shared his love with the people around him and was loved in return. Although he will be greatly missed, his memory will continue to inspire us always."

As of Wednesday, Hendrick Motorsports said memorial arrangements have not yet been made for the couple.