CHARLOTTE—One year after the death of Kevin Ward Jr., his family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Tony Stewart.
The two NASCAR drivers' cars collided last year and the chain of events that followed the accident resulted in Ward being hit and killed
A new reminder Friday, despite telling reporters just two days before he's trying not to think about it. NASCAR driver Tony Stewart is now facing a wrongful death lawsuit for his involvement in the deadly accident of Kevin Ward Jr.
On August 9, 2014, during a race in upstate New York, Stewart's car clipped Ward's. The video of the accident shows Ward then getting out of his car during "under caution" and walking down the track. Stewart's car hit and killed the 20-year-old.
The Ward family's lawsuit states
"Stewart could have easily acted reasonably and with prudence to avoid striking ward, just as all other drivers had done as they passed ward during the yellow caution flag."
Last year, a grand jury cleared Stewart of any criminal charges.
“It was just as quickly as a relief in my mind, in my heart, at the same time, it went back to the fact that we lost Kevin,” said Stewart.
Sports psychology professor at Queens University in Charlotte Kevin Burke said an accident like this can have a lingering impact on Stewart and others around him.
“This occurred basically on the job. So when he goes to work, he's really in the area where he works, and this is where the deadly accident happened. So again, that can cause a lot of trouble, and it can be hard to overcome that,” he said. “What can be going through his mind. Gosh, what if this happens again. You know, what if this could happen to me, and all the drivers know that.”
Burke hopes everyone involved has received proper counseling.
“It's not a weakness at all. We have to look at it like a physical malady. When you get sick, you go see a doctor, so if something's going on, something to do with a traumatic event like this, it's a good idea to get somebody to help you,” said Burke.