Ryan Newman Fans Already Donating to His Animal Rescue Charity After Daytona 500 Crash

NASCAR fans are showing their support for driver Ryan Newman by donating to a cause close to his heart following his scary Daytona 500 crash earlier this week. In the days since Newman, the driver behind the wheel of Roush Fenway Racing's No. 6 vehicle, was rushed to the hospital in serious condition, more than $1,500 have been donated by fans to his animal rescue charity Rescue Ranch.

"We have received quite a few heartwarming notes that people type into the 'comments' section while making their online donation; all of these will be saved and printed out for Ryan to read while he is recovering from his injuries," Elizabeth Rodriguez Newman, Director of Development for Rescue Ranch, told Business Insider.

Among those who have donated is former racer Michael Waltrip, who explained that he had learned of Newman's "passion to educate and help people help animals" when he "visited with Ryan in Nashville." He made a donation to Rescue Ranch "in honor of its founder [Ryan Newman] walking out of the hospital" on Wednesday. He then encouraged his fellow NASCAR fans to consider making a donation as well.

After that, a number of fans replied that they had done the same.

"You go it," wrote one person. "Just donated to be a 'best friend' to Rescue Ranch."

"I did," added another. "Hope it will help Tyan and Krissie on their mission to help animals!"

"I did and actually feel bad that I didn’t donate prior to the events of this week," commented somebody else. "What a beautiful place and wonderful creation of the Newman's!"

Newman and his wife launched Rescue Ranch in 2012 with the mission to promote, "through its education, respect for all animals, as well as agricultural, environmental, and wildlife conservation, and facilitates rehabilitation, rescue, and responsible pet ownership in order to enhance the human-animal bond," according to its website.

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Based in Statesville, North Carolina, the facility sits on 87 acres of land and in the future hopes to "include nature hiking and walking education trails, a 24-hour emergency veterinarian clinic with an extern program, a therapeutic riding program, and a rescue foster adoption program" in the future.

Newman was released from the hospital on Wednesday, Feb. 19, less than 48 hours after the Daytona 500 crash. There is “no timetable” for his return to racing and the vehicle involved in the crash has been transported to NASCAR's to NASCAR's Research and Development facility in Concord, North Carolina, where an investigation will be launched to determine ways to improve safety.