LINCOLN COUNTY, N.C. -- Former NASCAR driver Dick Trickle, 71, was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound on Thursday, according to the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office.
The incident occurred at 12:02 p.m. at Forest Lawn Cemetery on Highway 150 East in Boger City, a community in Lincoln County.
The Lincoln County Communications Center received a call apparently from the victim that "there would be a dead body and it would be his".
When communications workers attempted to call the number back, no one answered. The first emergency units arriving on the scene located the body lying near the victim's pickup truck.
Trickle was named the 1989 NASCAR Rookie of the Year. Trickle won twice in NASCAR's Nationwide Series and was nicknamed the "White Knight" as referenced by his sponsored SuperAmerica paint scheme, when he raced in Wisconsin.
Trickle was well known after he was shown on live television smoking inside his car during the 1990 Winston 500. NASCAR told Trickle he could smoke during yellow flag periods.
Trickle, who was born in Wisconsin, raced in over 2,000 races before he retired in 2002. His last win was the 1998 Dura-Lube 200 in Darlington.
Trickle lived in Lincoln Co. since the early 1990s.