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Drag Racing Story of the Day!

Tribute to Steve Collison

By Joel Naprstek

Our friend Steve Collison passed away yesterday, December 14, of an apparent heart attack. Steve was a generous and personable man who made some of the sport's most important journalistic contributions. He was currently the editor of Drag Racing USA magazine. Before that, he edited Super Stock & Drag Illustrated. Steve also did a stint at National Dragster in the 1970s. Steve Collison was one of our earliest supporters, placing ample free ads for the fledgling Drag Racing List booklet in Super Stock magazine. I will definitely miss him. Bill Pratt

I was with Steve Collison not long ago at the Atco, NJ nostalgia S/S meet where he came because he loved the cars and the action. He came as an enthusiastic fan that day to see and shoot the N/SS cars. He looked and acted fine; in fact was itchin' to get into a 4-speed car and run with the N/SS cars. He ran me down in the parking lot, wanted me to keep feeding him N/SS stuff, and thought the Atco meet was a great thing. 

I'd promised, as he asked, to get him a photo of the S/S-F/X Hall of Fame mural I did for him near the end of the SS&DI era. Steve wanted a good shot of it which he'd never gotten. I was going to get some shots for him this coming February. He was only in his early-mid fifties or so.

I always sent him all the stuff I post on the Internet newsgroups and forwarded much of what others posted ... he loved it. He was first and foremost a lover of the S/S-F/X stuff and its history. That may sound selfish or biased coming from me but I know it's true. He was THE man behind all the good stuff that was in SS&DI in its last few years and he wanted to do more. He wanted Drag Racing USA to cover more of it and the N/SS cars but his publisher wasn't for it. He wasn't happy about that when we BS'ed at Atco.

At the second S/S Reunion in VA in the summer of '96, we chatted about S/S-F/X and drag history in general. He said he was amazed that so little was done on the subject in the other automotive magazines.

Steve was a good guy, passionate about what he did and drag racing. He really got excited about it all. I didn't know him real well or for many years but the friendship was fast from the start, if you know what I mean.

Good guy and to my eyes one of the three most open and straight print editors there ever were in drag racing journalism ... Dick Berggren and Chris Economaki being the other two.

RIP Steve...

Joel Naprstek


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