Longtime race mechanic and former racer Eric Gray was found dead today in his home in Cache, Oklahoma. He was believed to be 60 years old.
“I found him today,” said George Nassaney, owner of the Altus Motorsports dealerships and Altus Factory race team that Gray worked for as Race Team Manager. “Basically, he didn’t show up for work today. My son said something to me this morning, and I know how Eric is. He’ll text me if he’s going to be five minutes late. He’s just that type of guy.
“My gut kept saying there’s something wrong. So, I decided to drive to his house because I built his house several years back. It’s about a 45-minute drive. When I got down here he didn’t answer the door, so I started walking around the property, looked in a window, and saw him lying flat on his back in the living room.”
Nassaney then called the local police, who made entry into the home and confirmed that Gray was deceased and had been deceased for hours if not days. The time and cause of death, however, had not been determined at post time.
“I saw him Saturday afternoon at the close of business,” said Nassaney. “I told him I’d see him on Tuesday. Jaret [Nassaney, George Nassaney’s son and a racer for Altus Motorsports] texted him on Monday and he never texted him back, so he’s been gone for a day before this happened.
“We had just driven to Daytona in my personal pickup truck. We had a good trip down there, a good trip home, came back and started getting prepared for the rest of the season.
“He handled all the suspension for the motocross bikes and all the [road] race team stuff. And this year we made a change. We were going to have two crew chiefs with him on Jaret’s [Supersport] bike and [Brandon] Paasch’s [Stock 1000] bike, and Mike Castro as the Crew Chief for Alessandro Di Mario [Junior Cup] and Joe LiMandri’s [Twins Cup] bike. We’re going to race. Eric would want us to race. So, we’re going to have to find another person to come in and move forward.”
Altus Motorsports won the 2020 MotoAmerica Stock 1000 and Superbike Cup Championships with Cameron Petersen and the 2021 MotoAmerica Stock 1000 and Superbike Cup Championships with Jake Lewis and MotoAmerica Junior Cup races with Kayla Yaakov in 2022 under Gray’s leadership.
We will post more information as it becomes available.