|Date: 5/17/2015 10:47:51 PM|
One year after terrifying crash, Duane Mausteller says thank you to all
By Dino Oberto … “Keeping Track”
(Bloomsburg, PA) It was exactly one year to the day that Sprint car driver Duane Mausteller of Bloomsburg had a near fatal crash at Selinsgrove Speedway. Hours after the high speed accident that took place at the end of the back straight, his life hung in the balance but thanks to a remarkable team of doctors at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, then ongoing rehabilitation, an amazing family and a never ending support line from the racing community, Mausteller has not only continued on the road to recover, but he was able to personally say thank you to the many who throughout the past year never stopped in any way to be there for him and his family.
On Sunday afternoon at the race shop, a huge gathering took place for a pig roast hosted by the Mausteller’s and Duane was there to meet and greet all of the guests.
“I think is so wonderful to see that everybody can come out for somebody. It’s bigger than ever I can explain. It is so nice to see all the support,” said 41-year Mausteller.
“When I look out over all these people it just shows how much racers support other racers. There were more people who supported me over this past year then I could ever tell thank you to.”
When you mention the name Mausteller around the Bloomsburg area you immediately think of the racing family led by patriarch Randy Mausteller who has competed for decades in Midgets and Sprints. Then came his sons, Duane and Shannon, who continued the family legacy through a variety of divisions with most of the emphasis in the same route as there dad.
Racing has been there whole life but on that fateful night of May 17, 2014 during the opening laps of the Sprint car feature, life took a dramatic change.
The accident occurred on lap three at approximately 10:35 p.m. and also involved Jamie Collard of Burford, Ont., and Shawn Donath of South Onondaga, N.Y. Mausteller was air-lifted to Geisinger Medical Center while Collard was transported by ambulance for back-related injuries. He did make a full recovery. Donath was not injured in the accident.
Mausteller suffered severe head injuries and doctors weren’t certain he would pull through. Gratefully he not only made it past the crucial first hours but an amazing return to everyday life.
“It’s been a long year and it’s a little further away than it was. It’s getting closer,” said Mausteller.
While he maintains a steady road to recovery through physical theory, the one thing that he suffered and has not been able to regain much of is his memory of certain parts of his racing past, including the accident. His races, his wins, his time at the track are all distant but he also has no regrets. He admits that his racing days are over but he will always be a racer.
“I actually don’t recall a lot of it but I am fine with all of it because the other option wasn’t good. Racing is always part of us as Mausteller’s and it’s who we are.”
His father was by his side from the moment the accident took place and remained there weeks afterwards.
“I’m just so thankful he’s here and what a great turnout of people. There was a lot of prayers, a lot of everything so to have everyone here is terrific and the support hasn’t stopped,” said Randy Mausteller.
The race shop that once housed several Sprint cars and had wall-to-wall equipment is all gone apart from a rear-end and two motors. There is still a Midget car that Randy raced and a few vintage race cars, something that they will now focus on restoring.
“As Duane gets better we will find more to do with racing,” said Randy. “We’ll never get out of racing totally. We had a good run, met a lot of good people and it’s not even close to being over. We’re ready to start a new chapter.”
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