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Irwindale, Calif. (Friday, May 27, 2016) - Retired Navy combat pilot Charlie Plumb will be Irwindale Speedway's very special guest of honor at tomorrow night's (May 28) NASCAR races.  The highly-decorated Vietnam veteran, accompanied by his family, will be introduced to the fans as a highlight of the track's annual armed forces night during special on-track opening ceremonies at 6:45PM


At 7PM the Captain will make the famous "Drivers ... Start Your Engines!" call for the first Pick Your Part Late Model race of the night and then enjoy watching the night's slate of NASCAR championship races from one of Irwindale's Skybox suites. 


"We're very proud to have Captain Plumb and his family joining with us for our annual salute to the armed forces of our country," said Irwindale Event Center President/CEO Jim Cohan.  "A true hero, the Captain represents the very best of our men and women in uniform, and it will be our great honor to host him and his family here at the Speedway this Saturday night."


... Plumb graduated from the Naval Academy at Annapolis and went on to fly the F-4 Phantom jet on 74 successful combat missions over Vietnam. On his 75th mission, with only five days before he was to return home, Plumb was shot down, captured, tortured, and imprisoned in an 8 foot x 8 foot cell. He spent 2,103 days as a Prisoner Of War in communist war prisons.


During his nearly six years of captivity, Charlie Plumb distinguished himself among his fellow prisoners as a professional in underground communications, and served for two of those years as the Chaplain in his camp.


Since his return home, more than 4,500 audiences in nearly every industry have been spellbound as Captain Charlie Plumb draws parallels between his P.O.W. experience and the challenges of everyday life. 


He has shared his message to an even wider public through appearances on Good Morning America, Anderson Cooper 360, MSNBC with Thomas Roberts, "The Seventies" with Wolf Blitzer, CNN New Day with Chris Cuomo, Yahoo! News with Bianna Golodryga, and The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.

One of the most sought-after achievement speakers of his time, Charlie Plumb's presentations are as he is, sincere, straightforward, humorous, and tailored to motivate each specific audience he encounters. His insights on how to cope with the difficulties as well as the opportunities in life have a positive impact on those who hear his message, those who read his books, and those who have come to know him as a friend.



Captain Joseph Charles Plumb

US Navy Fighter Pilot (Retired):


Prisoner of War:

May 1967 - February 1973


Recipient of:

Two Purple Hearts

Legion of Merit

Silver Star

Bronze Star

Prisoner of War Medal