Tha Sports Junkies 101

NASCAR Mourns Loss Of Betty Jane France



Betty Jane France, the widow of former NASCAR chairman Bill France Jr and mother of current NASCAR chairman Brian France and vice chairwoman Lesa France Kennedy, passed away Monday.

France served as NASCAR Executive Vice President and chairwoman of The NASCAR Foundation up until her death and has long championed many charitable causes, specifically children’s healthcare. The Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award recognizes NASCAR fans who form charities to contribute to children’s causes in their communities and is named in honor of Betty Jane.

In a statement, Lesa France Kennedy said “She played a significant role in NASCAR’s history, leading the charge to elevate the experience of our sport for the fans who love it, and her philanthropic efforts will forever remain a part of our sport.”

“My mother taught us incredible values, that of love, patience, compassion, and joy.” Brian France said in a statement. “She embraced life every day, and nothing fueled her passion more than children.”

Her passing has led to an outpouring of reaction from some of the top figures throughout the NASCAR industry.

NASCAR Hall of Fame driver and champion Richard Petty said “They say behind every strong man is a very strong woman. In this case, Betty Jane stood just as tall as Bill, Jr. She did just as much as anyone to build the sport and watch it grow. The Petty family sends our thoughts to Brian, Lesa, and the entire France family at this time.”

Tony Stewart tweeted “Our sport lost another great woman today. Betty Jane France will be missed.”

France Kennedy added “Beyond her greatest community service, her starring role was that of mother to my brother Brian and me. She was an incredible role model, cherished friend, and someone who demonstrated limitless possibilities that helped so many people pursue their dreams.”