Emporia’s Elliott Sadler, Hermie Sadler finding new purposes after racing careers

Sports

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — After successful careers at the highest levels of NASCAR, Elliott and Hermie Sadler could have gone anywhere.

But they chose to come home to Emporia and they have no regrets.

“I sat down with one of my best friends who just went through retirement, Dale Earnhardt Jr. And he just said, ‘Elliott, I want to you look at it as, retiring to something instead of retiring from something,'” Elliott Sadler remembered. “So I retired to being a dad, being a coach, helping underprivileged kids in our area get a platform, get a place to go play and shine in a positive environment.”

Elliott Sadler is active as a coach at TopHand Sports Academy and also has a growing iRacing team.

“(iRacing) has been a great decision. I absolutely have loved it. I’ve got 12 guys on the team now.  One of my guys is from Richmond, Garrett Manes. I have met a lot of good kids. I’m trying to give them an opportunity to follow their dream,” Elliott Sadler said.

Hermie Sadler, meanwhile, splits his time between running truck stops, travel centers and restaurants and being with his wife and three daughters.

In the case of his middle daughter, Halie, the two overlap. Halie was diagnosed with autism when she was 2 1/2 years old and works at one of the Sadlers’ properties, Fo Sho Restaurant.

“We look at her as a blessing every day because she wakes up happy, ready to go to work, and she comes here every day,” Hermie Sadler said. “Now she’s the most outgoing child I’ve got. So she’s come a long way in that respect.”

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