A public memorial service for J.D. Gibbs will be held at 11:30 a.m. ET Jan. 25 at Davidson College’s John M. Belk Arena in Davidson, North Carolina. Doors open at 10:30 a.m.
Gibbs, the eldest son of car owner Joe Gibbs, died Jan. 11 after a battle with a degenerative neurological disease. J.D. Gibbs was 49.
On a website honoring Gibbs’ legacy, it states that in lieu of flowers, the Gibbs family requests donations to the J.D. Gibbs Legacy Fund. The fund has been established to honor Gibbs and his passion for the Young Life Ministry, which he served as a member of the National Board.
The J.D. Gibbs Legacy Fund has two specific objectives that reflect J.D.’s passion for outreach:
To ensure “every kid” in the greater Charlotte region can be reached with the gospel, the Fund will provide the support necessary to reach adolescents from all socioeconomic backgrounds, those with special needs, and teen moms.
Young Life’s Windy Gap Camp in the mountains of N.C. has been a favorite of J.D.’s and his family for many years. Windy Gap is located just 15 miles north of Asheville, N.C. and the Fund will be used to support the construction of a new dining hall as well as additional facility improvements.
The team stated that that Gibbs died after a long battle with a degenerative neurological disease.
Tributes poured in throughout NASCAR on social media.
JD lived out the greatest commandment “love God and love others” in every part of his life. He modeled true character to our families, our company, and especially to me. I count it a privilege to have called him a best friend for over 3 decades. Well done faithful servant!! pic.twitter.com/wgs23zEcfL
Heaven gains a giant of a man, earth takes a severe blow. JD was sincere, talented & a man who lived what he believed. JD you ran the race~you finished~you won the prize. Thanks for the example to me & so many others. The Lord be with your family & all @JoeGibbsRacing ~ #RIP Hawk https://t.co/Nj3vcJDD0a
Devastated after hearing the passing of J.D. Gibbs 💔 I can’t begin to tell you all how incredible of a guy he was and there is no way I would be where I am today without him. That man made such an impact on the entire outcome of my life. You will forever be in our hearts
J.D. was a great man of faith that loved his family and served others. Now he is spending eternity with his Heavenly Father and no more suffering. Thinking about all the Gibbs family. https://t.co/3Gi0VMdCGG
If you want to know how to live life the right way and leave a legacy that will last forever-look no further than the example JD GIBBS set for all of us. A great leader, a man of faith, a family man and a friend. Rest In Peace JD.
So sorry to hear about the passing of J.D Gibbs. As a previous member of @JoeGibbsRacing I know how much Coach loved his son and missed him being fully healthy and himself. Prayers go up to the entire Gibbs family 🙏
Our prayers are w/the Gibbs family. JD served as a role model for all of us w/his perpetual smile, genuine compassion for others and great pride in his family. His sincere friendships with his competitors was a main reason the teams now work together. JD, you will be missed.
Absolutely heartbroken to wake up to the news about JD Gibbs.. You couldn’t ask for a better person. I loved our days of racing late models up and Tri County. JD will be missed by so many… 🙏🏼 Our thoughts and prayers are with the Gibbs family and everyone @JoeGibbsRacing
JD always had a smile on his face and took time to talk to everyone. You couldn’t pass JD without a wave. His positive attitude and joy for life is something we should all strive for. He’ll be missed but not forgotten.
J.D. Gibbs, the oldest son of car owner Joe Gibbs, died on Friday from complications following a long battle with a degenerative neurological disease, the team announced. J.D. Gibbs was 49.
The family revealed in March 2015 that J.D. Gibbs was suffering from brain-function problems but that doctors had no clear answer for it.
J.D. Gibbs was the president of Joe Gibbs Racing at the time, having done a variety of roles, including working on a pit crew with the organization.
“J.D. gains his strength from the fact that he has a personal relationship with the Lord, and I have got to tell you that he’s my hero when I kind of watch him,” Joe Gibbs said in 2015 at Martinsville Speedway. “I don’t know that anybody has ever deal with anything as courageous as J.D. does. He went through a situation with his son Taylor having leukemia at 2, and we fought through that for about three or four years … J.D. through his entire life has probably been the most courageous person that I’ve ever been around or knew.”
After winning the 2016 Daytona 500, Hamlin spoke of J.D. Gibbs: “He’s the guy that took a chance on me. This is the biggest win of my life. He’s not at every race. But to have him here with me today, that’s just how it was supposed to be, wasn’t it?”
In the tweet below from last year, Hamlin explained what J.D. Gibbs meant to him.
J.D. Gibbs was there at Joe Gibbs Racing from the beginning. He was named the organization’s president in 1997 and led the company from 2004-08 when Joe Gibbs returned to coaching in the NFL. Along with Hamlin, the company added Kyle Busch during J.D. Gibbs’ tenure.
Born Jason Dean Gibbs on February 21, 1969, J.D. as he became known, always had an outgoing personality and beaming smile. From 1987-’90, Gibbs played defensive back and quarterback at The College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.
The father of four boys with his wife Melissa – Jackson, Miller, Jason, and Taylor – Taylor was diagnosed with childhood leukemia in 2007 at age 2. At age 5 in 2010, Taylor underwent his final chemotherapy treatment.
Jim France interim NASCAR Chairman and CEO, issued a statement on Gibbs:
“We were privileged to watch J.D. Gibbs grow within the sport, displaying an endearing personality, a keen eye for talent and the strong business acumen that helped grow Joe Gibbs Racing into a preeminent NASCAR team. The NASCAR family has lost a truly special member. On behalf of NASCAR and the France family, I extend my deepest condolences to Joe Gibbs, Pat, Melissa, Coy and the entire Gibbs family.”
His car. His number. His signature above my door. I will always be grateful for what His family did for mine and the opportunity he gave me 14 years ago. Now more than ever #doitforJD
Praying for all of the Gibbs Family. J.D. was a mentor and a friend. His love for the Lord was infectious and the impact he made will have an eternal impact for so many. You have finished the race and received the prize. https://t.co/Yveam6cAoq
In the below video posted to Twitter announcing the paint scheme, Hamlin explained how Gibbs discovered him on a cold night at Hickory Motor Speedway in Hickory, North Carolina. Their relationship led to Hamlin joining JGR in 2004.
His first start for the team came in the 2004 Xfinity race at Darlington.
For nearly two years, J.D. Gibbs has been undergoing treatment for speech and processing issues that are part of his overall brain function. The issues reportedly stem from J.D. Gibbs’ time playing football in college.
It was the younger Gibbs who discovered Hamlin and encouraged the elder Gibbs to sign the young Virginia driver to a contract.
The rest is history – and now Hamlin wants to make some more history for his good friend on Feb. 26.