News & Multimedia

Medal Of Honor Winner Crandall To Serve As Honorary Starter

Bruce Crandall Video

Congressional Medal of Honor recipient Bruce P. Crandall has been named honorary starter for the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500 Mile Race on Sunday, May 29, waving the green flag to begin racing for the field of 33 drivers at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Retired Col. Crandall, who flew more than 900 missions as a helicopter pilot during the Vietnam War, received the Congressional Medal of Honor – the highest military decoration awarded by the United States government – in 2007.

“I’m thrilled and honored to be selected as the honorary starter for the Indianapolis 500 in its 100th anniversary year,” Crandall said. “The race is an American tradition, and I’m very grateful for the continued tributes to the U.S. Armed Forces during the pre-race ceremonies every year. I can’t wait to get into the starter’s stand.”

Crandall was honored for his leadership, heroism and courage during the Battle of Ia Drang on Nov. 14, 1965. He led the first major division operation of airmobile troops into Landing Zone X-Ray in the Ia Drang Valley and is credited with evacuating some 70 wounded comrades with his wing man and fellow Medal of Honor recipient Major Ed Freeman. The two also flew in the ammunition needed for the 1/7th Cavalry to survive. The craft Crandall was flying was unarmed.

During his military career, Crandall also received a Bronze Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross, a Presidential Unit Citation and a Purple Heart among numerous other citations.

“It’s a great honor to welcome Bruce Crandall to serve as the honorary starter of the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500,” said Jeff Belskus, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation president and CEO. “The Indianapolis 500 has paid tribute to the service and sacrifice of our Armed Forces since its inception on Memorial Day weekend in 1911, and it’s a privilege for a true American hero to send the field of 33 on its way toward Victory Lane at such a historic race.”

The 2002 movie “We Were Soldiers” was based on the operation for which Crandall was awarded the Medal of Honor, with 1997 Academy Award Best Supporting Actor nominee Greg Kinnear appearing as Crandall. 

***

2011 Indianapolis 500 tickets: Tickets are on sale for the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500, “The Most Important Race in History,” on Sunday, May 29, 2011 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Race Day ticket prices start at just $30. Fans can buy tickets online at www.imstix.com, by calling the IMS ticket office at (317) 492-6700, or (800) 822-INDY outside the Indianapolis area, or by visiting the ticket office at the IMS Administration Building at the corner of Georgetown Road and 16th Street between 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET) Monday-Friday.

Children 12 and under will be receive free general admission to any IMS event in 2011 when accompanied by an adult general admission ticket holder.

Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are on sale. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at (866) 221-8775 for more information.

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Medal Of Honor Winner Crandall To Serve As Honorary Starter
 
Medal Of Honor Winner Crandall To Serve As Honorary Starter
Congressional Medal of Honor recipient Bruce P. Crandall has been named honorary starter for the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500 Mile Race on Sunday, May 29, waving the green flag to begin racing for the field of 33 drivers at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Read More
Related Media
Conor Daly
 
Pruett's Preview: Chevrolet Dual in Detroit
This weekend in Detroit on the newly repaved Belle Isle street circuit is no different, and thanks to a pair of races—the only doubleheader event on the IndyCar calendar in 2015—physical and mental stamina will be pushed to the limit.
Read More
Indianapolis 500
 
USA Today's 10Best Readers Choice Voting Open for 'Best Motorsports Race,' 'Best NASCAR Track'
Voting is now open for USA Today’s 10Best Readers Choice in the “Best Motorsports Race” and “Best NASCAR Track,” with IMS featured in each.
Read More
2016 Indy 500 Logo
 
IMS Offers Special Ticket Discounts for 2016 Indianapolis 500 Fans
As a thank you to the greatest race fans in the world, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is offering special pricing for selected days for the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race on Sunday, May 29, 2016.
Read More
Juan Pablo Montoya
 
Monday Racing Roundup: Montoya Wins Thrilling Indianapolis 500
Montoya, who won the race 15 years earlier in his first start, held off reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion and teammate Will Power by .1046 of a second -- the fourth-closest finish in race history -- in a thrilling battle over the final 15 laps that also included pole sitter and 2008 race winner Scott Dixon. Five of the 37 lead changes occurred in those 15 laps following a restart, with Montoya overtaking Dixon in Turn 1 for second place and Power in Turn 4 to lead Lap 197 by .0420 of a second.
Read More
Charlie Kimball
 
Kimball Surprises as Ganassi's Top Fighter in '500'
Kimball had never finished better than eighth in four previous Indy 500 starts, but when Dixon faltered late due to an understeer, the door was open for third place. Kimball took advantage of Dixon lifting off the throttle with two laps to go.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 988
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact Laura Wyamn at (317) 492-8557 or email at lwyman@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
We are exactly 1 year away from the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500! #Indy500 #IndyCar https://t.co/Mnqonrp0lo
about 10 hours ago