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How Did Candace Muzny Die? Former NASCAR Racer Dead At 43

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How Did Candace Muzny Die? Former NASCAR Racer Dead At 43

Candace Muzny dreamed of being a professional race driver when she was young. She got to live her dream driving on the NASCAR circuit before retiring and heading back home to Oklahoma. Now the one-time racer has died suddenly at the age of 43. 

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Muzny's death comes shortly after an incident in her hometown where she was arrested for slapping a manicurist then assaulting a police officer with a pocket knife. Neither person was seriously harmed in the incident and Muzny was charged with aggravated assault and battery. 

Her passing appears to be unrelated to the incident at the nail salon and police say it was not a suspicious death.

Who was Candace Muzny and how did she die? Read on for all the details. 

1. Who was Candace Muzny?

Muzny was born in 1976 in Oklahoma where she grew up with her parents Al and Vanita, and three siblings, Cynthia, Christopher, and Lori. After high school, she pursued an art degree but chose to pursue her dream of car racing after getting her associate's degree, She moved out to Bakersfield, California to try and make a career for herself in NASCAR. She found her love of racing thanks to time spent at the local track when she was younger. Her parents owned a tow truck company called Arrow Wrecker service that provided towing at the track. "Al ran the wreckers at the racetrack for about 10 years,” said Muzny's mother Vanita. "He didn’t let Candace race when she was young, but she had a little Mustang that she raced all around town.” 

2. She had a short racing career, marred by tragedy.

While she was getting her racing career off the ground, she met fellow driver Del Dalrymple, who was more than 20 years her senior. The two fell in love and planned to marry but he tragically died of an aneurysm in 2007.

Despite the personal loss, she continued her racing career and was even sponsored by Jesse James and Sandra Bullock for a time. She drove in the NASCAR Late Model Divisions and NASCAR K&N Pro Series. She also participated in the 2007 Toyota All-Star Showdown, the 2007 Last Chance Open and in the 2009 Last Chance Open. She spent two years racing on the East Coast in 2011 and 2012, before returning to Oklahoma to work at the family business. 

Muzny and Dalrymple.

3. She still missed racing even after years away from the sport. 

As recently as this year, Munzy was still expressing sadness that her racing days were over. "I am frustrated with the world. I am under a lot of stress. I need to move. I need a break. I miss my racing family" she said in an interview

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4. Muzny got herself into legal trouble in early 2020.

On January 14, 2020, Muzny was arrested for assaulting an employee at a nail salon in Oklahoma City. When police arrived to handle the situation, Muzny attacked an officer and cut him with a pocket knife she had in her hand. The incident started when the manager of the salon asked the technician giving Muzny a pedicure a question; the two employees were speaking Vietnamese. Muzny objected to them speaking a foreign language in front of her and started yelling at them, threatening them with violence if they didn't start speaking English. She then slapped one worker in the face and punched another employee as he tried to call 911. When the police arrived, her dog bit an officer who was trying to arrest her and she cut him behind the ear with her pocket knife. 

“I asked her three times to stop speaking Vietnamese to me. I was paying with the American dollar,” Muzny said by way of explanation. “I think if you’re speaking to an American who is a customer of yours, and you know they’re not Vietnamese, it’s rude to talk to them in a language they don’t understand. She needs to get back to Vietnam. If she wants to live in America and serve Americans, she needs to speak the language they speak. If she wants to live on the American dollar, then she needs to speak English.”

Tiffany Nguyen, the woman who was attacked, said, “We were speaking in our native language about my pay, and then she said to 'F*cking stop speaking that language or I will slap you in the face.'' She went on to describe the assault in detail. “She got me cornered, and I fell,” Nguyen said. “But I was able to kick her,and she lunged and tried to put a knife up to my throat a couple of times.”

Police were treating the incident as a race-based crime.

5. On February 17, Muzny was found dead in her home.

Police were called to Muzny's house after a 911 call indicated that she had been found dead inside. When authorities arrived, the found Muzny deceased and started investigating the death as suspicious, though they did not feel it was a homicide.


A post shared by FOX 10 Phoenix (@fox10phoenix) on Feb 19, 2020 at 6:26am PST

Muzny passed away on February 17, 2020.

6. How did Candace Mzuny die?

Several days after her death, authorities announced it wasn't a suspicious death after all. They said it had been an accidental drowning in her home. No further details have come out so we don't know whether drugs or alcohol were involved.

Her family was too shocked to speak to the press after she was found dead.

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Rebekah Kuschmider has been writing about celebrities, pop culture, entertainment, and politics since 2010. She is the creator of the blog FeminXer and she is a cohost of the weekly podcast The More Perfect Union.