Gary Gabelich (August 29, 1940 – January 1984) was a Croatian-American who set the land speed record with his rocket powered automobile "Blue Flame" on October 23, 1970, achieving the average speed of . During the attempt only 13,000 lbs. s.t. was used and a peak speed of was momentarily attained (record speed was on dry lake bed at Bonneville Salt Flats in Wendover, Utah. This record was the first record over , it remained unbeaten until 1983, when Richard Noble broke it driving Thrust 2. Gabelich was seriously injured in the crash of an experimental 4 wheel drive Funny Car. Gabelich died in January 1984 in a motorcycle crash.
Gary was a delivery driver in his younger days for Vermillion's Drug store driving a split window 1960 era VW kombi delivery van. He lived at that time in Bixby Knolls area of Long Beach, Ca. with his parents.