Denver Post reporter fired after tweet on Japanese Indy 500 winner

Denver Post reporter fired after tweet on Japanese Indy 500 winner

Sports reporter Terry Frei is “no longer an employee of The Denver Post,” after tweeting a “disrespectful and unacceptable tweet,” according to a statement the newspaper released Monday.

The tweet in question followed a historic Indy 500 win by Japanese racer Takuma Sato, the first racer from an Asian country to win the race.

“Nothing specifically personal, but I am very uncomfortable with a Japanese driver winning the Indianapolis 500 during Memorial Day weekend,” Frei’s tweet read.

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A backlash grew online, with Twitter users calling Frei’s tweet racist. He deleted the message and in subsequent tweets apologized and said that his perspective was shaped by the fact that his father had flown unarmed missions over Japan in World War II and lost two teammates in the Battle of Okinawa. 

“I apologize to Takuma Sato. I made a stupid reference, during an emotional weekend, to one of the nations that we fought in World War II,” he wrote in a statement posted on Twitter over Memorial Day weekend. “I’m sorry, I know better, and I’m angry at myself because there was not constructive purpose in saying it.”