Clint Bowyer worked his second season with Fox’s NASCAR coverage but was mysteriously absent from the network’s final race broadcast in June at Sonoma. It was later disclosed that the former Cup Series driver had been involved in a fatal accident.
Since that tragedy, the former Stewart-Haas Racing driver has understandably been quiet on social media. That changed on Friday when he responded to a tweet that he had been tagged in, and it set off a heartwarming reaction from fans, including Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Clint Bowyer involved in fatal accident
Clint Bowyer worked in the Fox broadcast booth for the inaugural race at Gateway near St. Louis. According to a police report, later that evening he was driving near Lake Ozark, Missouri, which is approximately 150 miles southwest of St. Louis, when he struck a woman who was walking on a highway ramp.
According to the report, Bowyer called 911 and helped first responders locate the 47-year-old woman, Mary Jane Simmons, who was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver-turned-announcer showed no signs of impairment and provided a clean roadside sample to authorities.
Police indicated a crystalline substance was found in Simmons’ possessions and residents at the roadside park where she was staying said they believed she was under the influence.
Bowyer released a statement: “Anyone that knows me, knows that family is everything to me. My thoughts and prayers are with the family and loved ones of Ms. Simmons. This is a very difficult time for my family and I, please respect our privacy as we move forward.”
Bowyer ends silence with Twitter response
Since that tragic day, Bowyer, who has always been active on Twitter, went silent. Fans have wondered when he might break the silence. They got their answer on Friday when the 43-year-old replied to a tweet by CARS Tour driver Hayden Swank, who posted photos of his car for an upcoming race that will honor Bowyer with a throwback paint scheme the driver used during the 2005-06 Xfinity Series season when he won three times.
“So hyped for this scheme. Whatcha think @ClintBowyer,” Swank tweeted.
“Buddy, that scheme meant so much to me,” Bowyer replied. “I wanted to drive that iconic ACDelco #2 so bad. I’ll never forget when RC told me it was mine! Go get em!!!!”
Dale Earnhardt Jr. and fans offer heartwarming response
Unsurprisingly, there was a heartwarming reaction from fans to Bowyer’s first activity since June 5, including one from Dale Earnhardt Jr. The NASCAR Hall of Famer responded with a simple meme of Tom Hanks from the movie Forrest Gump smiling and excitedly waving.
“Seeing this tweet has brighten my day. Glad you’re doing okay bud,” one fan wrote.
“Nice to see u back on here Clint,” wrote another.
One fan after another welcomed Bowyer back on social media.
In a time when Twitter can be a toxic cesspool and so divisive, it was refreshing to see the NASCAR community unite together in support of someone who has endured an unspeakable tragedy.
Welcome back, Clint.