Community remembers ‘Speedway Santa’

Local News

Emmett Waltz, better known as Speedway Santa due to his likeness to Santa Clause and how much time he spent at Speedway gas stations, is being remembered by his family and community as being the “ultimate people person.”

He was a man of many names. Legally, he was Emmett Waltz. His closest friends and family called him Lindy, but his neighbors called him Speedway Santa.

He was known for being a people person and would routinely go to the Speedway gas station off of Sherman Boulevard just to talk to people and make sure the staff was taken care of.

“He’d come up here and just sit, make sure nothing would happen, that us employees were safe,” said Lindsey Elliott who works at that Speedway that Speedway Santa frequented. “He was a very nice guy. He loved everybody.”

Kids were part of how he earned the nickname of “Speedway Santa.”

“Even as a kid, especially when I was in trouble, he would take me to K-mart or whatever to find oil and we would be there forever,” Sarah Waltz, Speedway Santa’s daughter, said. “All the little kids would run up to him and be like ‘Santa! Santa!’ and it was so embarrassing, but as we got older, we got used to it.”

Speedway Santa would often hand out candy to kids. His daughters said it was part of his craving for attention, but they said he was the “ultimate people person.”

Speedway Santa lost his battle with cancer on July 23rd. His community is bracing for life without him.

“”It’s going to be hard,” said Jordan Green, another one of Speedway Santa’s daughters. “I got close with him over the last six months and was taking care of him daily. So, it’s definitely going to be different.”

“He was a very nice, loving guy,” EElliott said. “He’s known as Speedway Santa. If they ever had a chance to meet him, they would have seen that he was a nice guy, and he’s definitely going to be missed.”

Speedway Santa’s daughters said his showing is at the C.M. Sloan and Sons Funeral Home Friday afternoon from four to eight. They plan to display his motorcycle at the showing as well. There will also be an addition hour of visitation on Saturday before the funeral at two that afternoon. He will be carried in a Harley Hearse to the cemetery. Sarah Waltz said “Absolutely anyone with or without a bike is welcome.” Sarah is also working with the Indiana Freedom Riders to put on a memorial motorcycle ride in his honor. That plan is not final yet.

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