Voice of Rockingham Dragway is silenced


by Tim Hailey and Steve Earwood, photo courtesy of Rockingham Dragway

Big John Leviner, AKA NC Big Show, the voice of Rockingham Dragway, passed away today (November 16) at 46 after suffering an apparent massive heart attack at his home. Big John was a much beloved figure at The Rock, with a distinctive humor that showed his deep knowledge about everyone that passed in front of his tower window. A true original, Big John would never pass up an opportunity to crack an inside joke in place of a sponsorship plug. Entertainment first, ass kissing second or never. That made it all the more special to hear him plug "Eatmyink."

If you never hung around the Rockingham office during the week, you might not know that Big John was also a key player in the day-to-day operation of Steve Earwood's track, handling announcing, event management and organization responsibilities for 18 years. “It’s a terrible and unexpected loss,” Rockingham owner Earwood said, “both professionally and personally. Whenever I needed to know that something was going to be taken care of, no matter what it was, I turned it over to ‘Big John’ and never thought about it again. Besides everything else he did, Big John kept everyone loose. He was a free spirit who loved life and loved working at Rockingham Dragway. He made it fun taking our sport serious. He left a mark on all of us. It won’t be the same without him but you could never forget him.”

Big John was always cracking on my clothes, especially my socks. He often called me "Socks." One day while I was making my way across the front of the tower towards the photo area alongside the left lane, John opened the mic and said "Who dresses that man?" It was brilliant and I've repeated it often.

Big John is now "gone to class." He is survived by his mother and step-father, Brenda Paul Sellers and Bill Sellers of Bennettsville; his father, John H. Leviner of Hamlet; his maternal grandmother, Lois Paul of Hamlet; brothers, Robin Leviner, Shannon Leviner and Blake Leviner all of Hamlet, Josh Leviner of Rockingham, and Erick and Derrick Sellers both of Bennettsville; a sister, Crystal Leviner of Hamlet; and Best Friend and Mentor, Steve Earwood..

Visitation will be held Saturday, November 19, 2011, Outreach for Jesus, from 6:00- 8:00 pm.

At other times the family will be at the home of his mother and stepfather, 4915 Lightwood Road, Bennettsville, SC.

The Funeral Service will be Sunday, November 20, 2011 at 3:00 pm at Outreach for Jesus with Rev. Jeff Collins, Pastor Marvin Taylor and Mr. Steve Earwood officiating. Burial will follow in Nebo Wesleyan Church Cemetery.

For those that wish memorials may be made in “Big John’s” memory to Nebo Wesleyan Church Children’s Ministry, 1812 Airport Road, Hamlet, NC 28345 or Outreach for Jesus Children’s Ministry, 440 Battley Dairy Road, Hamlet, NC 28345.

Harrington Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Leviner Family.

Online condolences may be made @www.harringtonfuneralhome.com.