J. D. Gibbs, the son of NFL Hall of Fame coach and NASCAR team owner, Joe Gibbs, died January 11 at the age of 49 after a long battle with a neurological disorder.
Young Gibbs co-founded Joe Gibbs Racing with his father and held the position of president and later co-chairman of the company. Before founding the team with Joe Gibbs, young J.D. was a part time driver making 13 race starts and a member of the over the wall pit crew. During the four years that Coach Gibbs returned to the Washington Redskins and coaching, J.D. was left to run the company where it won a third Championship and added a third team. Currently Joe Gibbs Racing fields four teams – Denny Hamlin in the number eleven car, Kyle Busch in the number 18 car, Martin Truex Jr in the number 19 car, an Erik Jones in the number 20 car – in the Monster Energy Cup Series.
He was born Jason Dean Gibbs on February 21, 1969 in the Los Angeles area while father Joe was an assistant coach for the University of Southern California Trojans. As the family followed Gibbs through his coaching career, J.D. lived in Arkansas, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, San Diego, and Washington.
Choosing not to follow in their father’s footsteps, J.D. and brother Coy felt the need for speed and began racing anything that would go fast including go-karts, jet skis, and motorbikes.
While attending college at William and Mary, Gibbs played on the football team as a defensive back and as the quarterback.
J.D. is survived by his wife Melissa and children – Jackson, Miller, Jason, and Taylor – and his parents Joe and Patricia.
feature photo taken from Joe Gibbs Racing Facebook page