Brian's wish still going strong

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Eyewitness News / Lynsay Clutter

Indianapolis - The Indy 500 means much more than the event itself. The racing community came together four years ago when a dying man needed their help. Friday night that race fan's last wish is still coming true.

One of racing's biggest fans died four years ago, but his voice is still heard today.

Lou Gherig's Disease took Brian Hall's life. His family attended a vigil on Monument Circle to raise awareness of ALS - it was Brian's dying Wish.

"Sure, there are tears, and I'll probably cry here tonight, but it'll be OK because look at the awareness this can bring," said Mary Miller, Brian's mother.

The momentum for his cause started at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway when word of Brian's passion began to spread at the track.

Eddie Cheever Jr, Former Indy 500 Champion, was a hero to Brian. "The racing community is a small family. I've met people at the Speedway that have been going there for 60 years," said Cheever. "Brian was just a very unique experience in my life - of which I've never talked about publicly."

An emotional Cheever said he visited Brian to offer comfort, but instead, took away a great gift.

Cheever said, "It was one of those moments where you learn a lot of lessons by listening. I think a lot of us go through life thinking we'll put off until tomorrow the things we really want to do and he told me, when he was diagnosed, how he went to the race tracks and got close to his son."

Brian died on Carb Day in 2002. Cheever, and 26 other cars, raced that year reminded of his spirit with a decal on their cars commemorating Brian.

"It happened in the morning and they knew at the track and it just went through like wildfire," said Miller.

Cheever supported Brian's parents efforts to form the non-profit organization, Brian's Wish. Four years later, Brian's wish is still going strong.

The four year anniversary of Brian's death is next Friday on Carb day. 
Next Saturday, the annual "Camp and Brew" in the Coke Lot will raise money for Brian's Wish to find a cure.