|Our deepest condolences to the Seller/Blanchette family on the passing of Rachel Seller, wife of the late Bob Seller, mother of Rod Seller and Rhonda Blanchette, and Grandmother to Megan Blanchette – all well respected long-time past officers and members of NEAR.
Rachel M. (Goetchius) Seller
SOUTHINGTON – Rachel M. (Goetchius) Seller, 88, of Meriden and formerly of Southington, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at HOCC of New Britain. She had been the loving wife of the late Robert J. Seller for 62 years.
Born in Quincy, Mass., on Jan. 12, 1930 to the late Kenneth and Pauline (Plummer) Goetchius, she had been a longtime Southington resident. Rachel graduated from North Quincy High School and went on to enroll as one of the first women at MIT, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Architectural Engineering. Rachel moved to Southington in 1954 after marrying her childhood sweetheart, Bob. She established her own residential home design business so she could work at home while raising her children. Rachel loved auto racing, singing in the chorus and playing bingo. She also played the piano and the organ. Rachel is survived by her daughter, Rhonda Blanchette and her husband, Gerry, of Plantsville; her son, Rodney J. Seller and his wife, Kristin, of New Britain; and three grandchildren, Amanda Seller, of Hebron, Robert Blanchette and his longtime girlfriend, Jenn, of Panama City Beach, Fla., and Megan Blanchette, of Plantsville; and several nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Rachel’s memory may be made to the Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation, 103 Vision Way, Bloomfield, CT 06002 or at https://www.fidelco.org/.
Rachel’s family would like to extend a special thank you to the entire staff at the Village at Kensington Place for the exceptional care and compassion they showed her for the last 6 years.
Calling hours will be held on Tuesday, March 20, from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Plantsville Funeral Home, 975 S. Main St., Plantsville. A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, March 21, at the Plantsville Funeral Home, with an hour of visitation prior to the service from 9 to 10 a.m. at the funeral home. Burial will follow in South End Cemetery, Southington. For online condolences and directions, please visit www.plantsvillefuneralhome.com.
Plantsville Funeral Home
All Near Events in 2018 will be co-ordinated by a committee split into Northern/Southern New England contingents. Any drivers/cars desiring to run with NEAR will be required to submit a 2018 medical form. Each car will require a safety inspection and have the 2018 NEAR inspection sticker affixed to run on any track.
Copies of the forms and rules are highlighted below for your convenience. Please click on link, and download/print. Further information, as well as contact info for the committee chairs, will soon be available.
Attention: New show added to schedule.
Bouchard Show in Sept. has been changed to the 15th. Plainville Reunion Date is Sept. 22nd, rain date the 23rd.
2018 schedule is up with what we have right now for cars, menu to the top.
2018 Membership apps . Club/car rules, HOF Nomination forms are up in menu buttons to the right.
2018 officers and contact info updated, more to come!!!
MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM
ALL OF US AT NEAR!
Board Meeting Tuesday 11/22/17 at 7:15 P.M.
Hall of Fame Wrapup/Report
Planning for December Event
Planning for January Meeting
1209 Main St
East Hartford, CT.
Thanks to Candy Cleveland for all photos!
Ken Bouchard has the finishing touch for your vintage race car. We have over 90 Original M&H sticker tires for sale. Please call and leave a message 508-314-6013
Ken Bouchard’s Motorsports
520 Fairmount Street
Fitchburg, MA 01420
Submitted by Justin St. Louis
Veterans Committee elects three pioneers to join NEAR’s 20th Class
SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn. – A trio of well-travelled post-World War II drivers – Midget icon Dutch Schaefer and Modified standouts Joe McNulty and Henri “Red” Barbeau – are the Veterans Committee selections for induction into the New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame. All three inductions will be made posthumously.
Long Islander Schaefer and New Englanders McNulty and Barbeau join drivers Russ Wood, Bobby Gahan, Gardiner Leavitt, and brothers Jeff and Rick Fuller, crew chief Steve Bird, car owner Tom Dunn, and announcer/promoter Ben Dodge Jr. in the Class of 2017. The induction ceremony is Sunday, Nov. 12, at Maneely’s Banquet Hall in South Windsor, Connecticut.
“Schaefer, who battled in Midget racing’s post-World War II golden era, and McNulty and Barbeau, who helped the Modified become New England’s signature division, are pioneers in every sense of the word,” said R.A. Silvia, chairman of the NEAR selection committee. “They had a definite impact on New England auto racing history.”
Active from 1933 until just short of his passing in 1978, Schaefer, a four-time ARDC king, was among the country’s Midget superstars and is a member of the National Midget Hall of Fame. A multi-time ARDC president as well, Schaefer included three Danbury Fairgrounds titles among his championships. A frequent NEMA competitor as well, the mustached driver won at a dozen New England tracks, including legendary ovals like Eastern States Exposition, Pines Speedway, Cherry Park, and Candlelight Stadium.
The personable McNulty, known for “taking care of the race car,” was a force in Southern New England in the 1950s and ‘60s, posting wins at Lonsdale, Seekonk, and the Waterford Speedbowl. He was also a winner at Norwood and the demanding Old Bridge in New Jersey, the latter two under the NASCAR banner. Bertha Small’s #23 and Slim Ross’ #222 were among the rides for the Providence native who raced out of Quaker Hill, Conn.
A Woonsocket, R.I., product, Barbeau was a familiar figure from the late 1940s into the early 1970s in both Modifieds and Cutdowns. Heading up Barbeau’s résumé is a major win at Pinecrest Speedway in Toronto in 1959 and a late model championship at Seekonk in 1973. Usually associated with the Reveraux/Auclair #L1 car, Barbeau was a force on a circuit that included, among other stops, Lonsdale, Westboro, West Peabody, Norwood, the Pines, and Seekonk speedways.
More information, including ticket purchases, is available at www.NEAR1.org.
Photos by Bill Henry