NASCAR legend Robert Yates dies

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CHARLOTTE, NC - MAY 24: (L-R) Robert Yates and Winston Kelley react after Yates is announced to the NASCAR Hall of Fame during the NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Day at NASCAR Hall of Fame on May 24, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Legendary NASCAR champion car owner and engine builder Robert Yates has died.

His son,  Doug Yates, posted about his father’s passing on Twitter late Monday night.

The post read, “My Dad and Hero, Robert Yates, has passed and is with the Lord. Thanks for all the prayers and support.”

Yates, a North Carolina native, had been battling liver cancer for about a year, according to ESPN.

Yates began as an engine builder for Junior Johnson in 1971 and won three Daytona 500s as a car owner.

“Our sport lost one of the most inventive minds and kindest personalities in Robert Yates,” NASCAR Cup champion driver Tony Stewart said of his passing. “I’m glad I got to know him and proud our race team was able to honor him this year at Darlington.

Many in the NASCAR community took to social media to honor Yates’ passing: