Caleb Hammond, of Oskaloosa, died at 2 a.m. Monday, his mother, Holly Kempf, wrote on Facebook. The boy was diagnosed with leukemia in February 2017, according to the Des Moines Register. Caleb went through several months of unsuccessful chemotherapy treatments and a bone marrow transplant, before he and his family decided to discontinue treatment, the newspaper reported.
Kempf wrote on Facebook Monday: "Our little Mr went peacefully in his sleep at 2:00 a.m. today surrounded by our families. Before I was woken up being told he was getting ready to pass, he was smiling at me while I was dreaming. With my hand on his chest, I felt his last breath and a few last heartbeats."
Caleb received hundreds of stickers from all over the country, including some from NASCAR and IndyCar drivers, WXIN reported. He also was given the chance to drive a race car on a dirt track and ride in a $3 million race car, KCCI reported. Ferrari dealer Garrett Hayim sent the race car, a driver and a racing suit to Iowa so Caleb could ride at the Iowa Speedway, the television station reported.
On Facebook, NASCAR Off-Track posted that the #TeamCaleb car decal will be run in the boy’s honor Monday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Twelve NASCAR race cars will honor Hammond today at IMS during the Xfinity race and Brickyard 400, WXIN reported.
Several NASCAR drivers and teams tweeted their condolences Monday.
I was lucky enough to meet Caleb Hammond @oskychanllenge in early August. What the racing community did for & with Caleb the last month was amazing. Thoughts and prayers to his family & friends. #teamcaleb #calebstrong #RIP pic.twitter.com/viYWSbUtiH— Kasey Kahne (@kaseykahne) September 10, 2018
Today @Mc_Driver & @Team_FRM will run the #TeamCaleb decal on the lower rear window support of his #34 #Ford Fusion in honor of Caleb Hammond who passed away from leukemia early this morning. Rest in peace bud. 😥 #CalebStrong #NASCAR pic.twitter.com/XJikLGAX1J— Shawn Magee Design (@SMD_racing) September 10, 2018
Today @DavidRagan & @Team_FRM will run the #TeamCaleb decal on the lower rear window support of his #38 #Ford Fusion in honor of Caleb Hammond who passed away from leukemia early this morning. Rest in peace bud. 😥 #CalebStrong #NASCAR pic.twitter.com/3far7pTAwW— Shawn Magee Design (@SMD_racing) September 10, 2018
We race on in your memory today. 🏁— NASCAR (@NASCAR) September 10, 2018
Our deepest condolences go out to the friends & family of Caleb Hammond. pic.twitter.com/GS5wR3lEDB
Funeral services are pending, KCCI reported.
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