Carroll Hall Shelby (January 11, 1923 – May 10, 2012) was an American automotive designer, race car driver, and automotive entrepreneur from Texas. Shelby is best known for his involvement with creating the high-performance England-based AC Cobra which was produced from 1962 to 1967, Ford GT40 which captured two Le Mans Grand Prix’s in 1966 and 1967 and the 1960 and 70 era Mustangs for Ford Motor Company, later known as Shelby Mustangs.
In October 1959, he opened a high-performance driving school and the Shelby-American company. He obtained a license to import the AC Cobra, known in the US as the Shelby Cobra. Shelby remained influential with Ford manufactured cars. After parting ways with Ford, Shelby moved on to help develop performance cars with Dodge and Oldsmobile.
In the early 1980s, Shelby began working with Dodge at the request of Chrysler Corporation, Shelby was brought on board as the “Performance Consultant” on the Dodge Viper Technical Policy Committee, Shelby was used for his wealth of experience to make the Viper as light and powerful as possible
He was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1991, the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America in 1992, the Automotive Hall of Fame in 1992, and the Diecast Hall of Fame in 2009. He was also inducted into the SCCA Hall of Fame on March 2, 2013.
CARROLL SHELBY PASSES AWAY
LOS ANGELES – May 11, 2012 – Carroll Shelby International, Inc., (OTC: CSBI.PK) announced today that Carroll Hall Shelby, a man whose vision for performance transformed the automobile industry, has died at age 89. Mr. Shelby passed away yesterday at Baylor Hospital in Dallas. The cause of death was not disclosed.
Born on Jan. 11, 1923, Carroll Shelby was one of America’s greatest success stories. Championship-winning racecar driver, “flying sergeant” wartime pilot, philanthropist, entrepreneur, car manufacturer and racing team owner, he embodied the ingenuity, tenacity and grit to overcome any obstacle. He is perhaps the only person to have worked at a visible level with all three major American automobile manufacturers.
Carroll Shelby founded Carroll Shelby International, a publicly held corporation involved in many industries. His licensing arm has agreements with industry giants, such as Mattel, Sony, Ford Motor Company and Electronic Arts. His car company, Shelby American, has a thriving parts business as well as a line of muscle cars including the Shelby GT500 Super Snake, Shelby GT350 and Shelby GTS. The Las Vegas-based company also manufactures a limited number of the 1960s Shelby 289 “street,” 289 FIA, 427 S/C and Daytona Coupe Cobras.
Shelby considered his greatest achievement to be the establishment of the Carroll Shelby Foundation™. Created in 1992 while Shelby was waiting for a heart transplant, the charity is dedicated to providing medical assistance for those in need, including children, educational opportunities for young people through automotive and other training programs and benefitting the Carroll Shelby Automotive Foundation.
Shelby remained active in the management of each of his companies and the Foundation until his death, even though he endured both heart and kidney transplants in the last two decades of his life.
“We are all deeply saddened, and feel a tremendous sense of loss for Carroll’s family, ourselves and the entire automotive industry,” said Joe Conway, president of Carroll Shelby International, Inc. and board member. “There has been no one like Carroll Shelby and never will be. However, we promised Carroll we would carry on, and he put the team, the products and the vision in place to do just that.”
Shelby is survived by his three children Patrick, Michael and Sharon, his sister Anne Shelby Ellison of Fort Worth and his wife Cleo. Funeral plans are not currently available. Donations to the Carroll Shelby Foundation are encouraged in lieu of flowers. Information about the Carroll Shelby Foundation is available at www.carrollshelbyfoundation.org.
You must be logged in to post a comment.