Hundreds of Soldiers and Airmen from Fort Bragg participated in pre-race events and benefitted from the cheers of thousands of race fans during the Memorial Day weekend NASCAR Coca-Cola 600 held at Charlotte Motor Speedway May 27.

The XVIII Airborne Corps commander, Maj. Gen. Rodney Anderson, was on hand to speak to the crowd before the race and enjoy the sights and sounds of one of NASCAR’s premier events honoring the nation’s veterans.

“To have the (NASCAR) Coca-Cola 600 recognize and acknowledge our veterans on this weekend is just something special,” said Anderson.

Pre-race events showcasing Fort Bragg Soldiers and Airmen included a 21-gun salute fired by the howitzers of Battery A, 3rd Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, a jump by two Soldiers from the Black Daggers of the Special Operations Command Parachute Team and a crowd pleasing march through the stands by hundreds of uniformed men and women.

Soldiers and Airmen from Fort Bragg were able to interact up close and personal with some of their favorite NASCAR personalities and take cell phone photos and videos to capture the behind the scenes events of the day.

The U.S. Army is represented on the track by the number 39 U.S. Army Chevrolet driven by Ryan Newman.

In a article, Newman encouraged fans to remember America’s servicemembers. He wrote that he hoped everyone would take a moment to honor the men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifices over the years to protect our freedoms.