April 2019 – In Memoriam

William Berube
William J. Berube, 73, recently of Greenville, N.H., died Jan. 28, 2019, at Holy Family Hospital, Me-thuen, Mass.
The son of the late Joseph and Eva (Demers) Berube, Mr. Berube was born in Dracut, Mass., and raised on the family’s farm, where he resided for more than 50 years. He was a graduate of Dracut High School, class of 1963.

Mr. Berube worked as a Standardbred trainer in Pepperell, Rockingham and Foxborough for many years, and worked with Joel Wheeler for the last 25. He also raced horses over the years at many of the region’s tracks.

Mr. Berube had a fondness for farming and tending to the many farm animals he raised over the years.

He is survived by his sister, Helen L. Milo; brothers, Thomas J. (Marianne) and Robert J. (Penny); and many nieces and nephews.

Online condolences may be shared at http://www.racicotfuneralhome.com.

Eddie Dunnigan
Ed “Eddie” Dunnigan, 80, died Feb. 11, 2019, following a 10-plus-year battle with cancer.
A consummate horseman, classic racetrack character, father of four and friend to all, Mr. Dunnigan played a role in the harness racing community for the better part of seven decades.

His obsession with horses started with a shaggy Shetland pony named Scout. As the son of a respected racetrack owner and operator and grandson of the New York state senator who legalized pari-mutuel wagering in New York, racing and gaming was in Mr. Dunnigan’s DNA.

With no interest in the business side of racing, the high school sophomore ran away from boarding school to chase his Grand Circuit dreams. Living in stalls and tack rooms, he was fortunate enough to rub blue-blooded stock and to learn from some of the most well-respected horse-men in the business.

A steadfast student anywhere but inside of a classroom, he studied under, competed against and befriended many of the early masters of the sport. The list of allies, idols, employers, mentors, friends and partners in plenty of pranks reads like a who’s who in harness racing.

Mr. Dunnigan trained and drove at dozens of tracks from coast to coast and throughout Europe and Scandinavia, as well as New Zealand, during the better part of his tour of duty.

He originally cut his teeth learning to drive under the watchful eye of the late John Chapman. He won his first race, however, in the 1950s driving for Jimmy Cruise at Bay Meadows in San Mateo, Calif.

His vast circle of friends, and the outpouring of support in the wake of his passing, shows the true depth and breadth of impact of this simply complex character. Many will miss Mr. Dunnigan’s warm smile; his quick Irish wit; his endless stories, opinions and advice; and his resounding reply of “yes” anytime there was fun to be had.

Mr. Dunnigan is survived by his four children, John, Joe, Mark and Mary. He was preceded in death by his brothers, Jimmy Jr., Richard and Jack.

Dennis G. Henert
Dennis G. Henert, 73, of Streator, Ill., and a resident of Flanagan Rehabilitation Health Care Center, died Feb. 3, 2019, at OSF Saint James Hospital.

Mr. Henert was born Feb. 26, 1945, in Rochelle, Ill., to Roland H. and Lucille R. (Danekas) Henert. He graduated from the Ashton High School in 1963 and was a self-employed farmer and Stand-ardbred trainer. He loved attending auctions and going to the county fairs.

He married Pauline Melrose on April 14, 1973, and she survives. Also surviving are his children, Randall (Kim), Roland “Bugs” and Shelly Hoisington; seven grandchildren; and a brother, Verslis (Jan). He was preceded in death by his parents.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association (http://www.alz.org) or the Flanagan Rehabilitation Health Care Center (http://www.petersenhealthcare.net/flanagan).

Anthony J. Minore
Anthony Joseph Minore Sr., 27, died on Feb. 7, 2019.

The son of Paul and Sharon Minore, Mr. Minore was born in Mt. Holly, N.J., but spent his youth in Yardville. He enjoyed football, martial arts, skateboarding and trekking in the woods.

He graduated from Steinert High School and went on to Palm Beach State College. He spent the last 10 years in Delray Beach, Fla. He loved working out in the gym, cooking, spending time at the beach and pool, and hanging out with friends.

He was charming, charismatic and kind, with the gift of “Irish gab.”

His family often referred to him as “The Mayor.”

Mr. Minore was loved by many and will be sorely missed. He was preceded in death by his pa-ternal grandparents, Mary and Anthony; maternal grandparents, Marie and Joseph Cantwell; aunt, Eileen Beykirch; and cousin, Joseph Cantwell. He is survived by his parents, Sharon and Paul; brother, Paul Jr. (Alyssa); nephew, Braydon Paul; son, Anthony Jr.; and his Florida brother, John D’Amico. He also had numerous aunts, uncles and cousins that loved him dearly.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Anthony J. Minore Jr. Educational Fund, c/o Paul Minore, 287 Manor Blvd., Hamilton, NJ 08620.

Gene Montgomery
Gene Montgomery, 84, of Charleston, Ill., died after a courageous battle with cancer on Feb. 9, 2019, at his home surrounded by his loving family.

Mr. Montgomery was born April 30, 1934, in Bone Gap, Ill., to the late Robert W. and Mary (Gar-rison) Montgomery. He married Sylvia Braden on Jan. 7, 1955, in Charleston, and they just cele-brated 64 wonderful years of marriage.

His love of horses led him to begin his career as a trainer and driver, and he raced in several states, including California, New York, Florida and Maine. He transitioned to become one of the sport’s premier starters and race officials for more than 40 years. He started races in Chicago, along with numerous state and county fairs, including the sport’s biggest event, the Hambletonian.

He was inducted into the Illinois Harness Horsemen’s Association Hall of Fame in 2013.

Later in life he enjoyed camping, going to festivals, and shopping while riding his scooter, sometimes a little too dangerously. He cherished holidays and attending parties with his wife and family. He followed University of Illinois athletics, but his greatest joy was attending his grandchildren’s sporting events as their biggest fan.

Mr. Montgomery had a courageous fight with cancer and was cared for until the end by his wife and his entire family.
He always had a smile on his face, was a good friend to many, and a great family man. He will be missed dearly.

Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Sylvia; children, Vickie (Tom) Austin, Jane (Chuck) Bell, Teresa (Ken), Robert Gene Jr. (Amanda) and Tim (Kristi); 11 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; sister, Patsy (Don) Johnson; and sister-in-law, Dorothy. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by brothers, Ben and Jess; and his beloved dog, Bandit.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105-3678 (http://www.stjude.org). Gifts may be mailed in care of Adams Funeral Chapel, 2330 Shawnee Dr., Charleston, IL 61920.

Maureen Ryan
Maureen D. Ryan, 75, wife of Yonkers Raceway’s longtime track superintendent, Ed Ryan, died Feb. 6, 2019, surrounded by family at her daughter’s home in Boca Raton, Fla.

She was born Feb. 26, 1943, in Hoboken, N.J., where she was raised, and graduated from Sacred Heart Academy. While spending summers in Monmouth Beach with her family, she met her future husband. They were married in 1964, moving permanently to Monmouth Beach the following year.

Mrs. Ryan was known for her gracious spirit and beautiful heart. She had an unforgettable smile and an enthusiasm for life that touched everyone in her presence. A devoted wife, mother and grandmother, nothing was more important in her life than her family.

In addition to her husband of 54 years, she is survived by her children and their spouses, Erin, Nancy Segall, Kelly (Felipe) Benedit, Kathrine (Philip) Sciortino, Tara (Ralph) Beltran and Edward (Elsa); and all seven of her beloved grandchildren, Katelyn, Lauren, Philip, Thomas, Padraic, Isabel and Juliana. Mrs. Ryan was preceded in death by her parents, Daniel and Theresa (Bartletta) Car-mody; and her sister, Eileen Carmody.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105-3678 (http://www.stjude.org).

Charles “Doug” Stovall
Charles D. “Doug” Stovall, 81, of Lebanon, Ohio, died Feb. 10, 2019, at Ohio Living Quaker Heights, in Waynesville, after an extended illness.

Mr. Stovall was born Dec. 27, 1937, in Muhlenberg County, Ky., and later moved to Dayton, Ohio. He was a graduate of Wilbur Wright High School in 1956. He was a high school football player, lat-er playing semipro for the Dayton Triangles.
After being in business with his father as a ceramic tile craftsman, he pursued his horse racing career in the mid-1970s. He was an owner, trainer and driver until his health prevented him from being active. As the owner of Firethorn Shirley, he was proud that all her offspring took a mark of 1:58.4 or better.

Other notable horses he owned or trained were Flea Market, Sister Sunray, Stoman, Marley and Swango. The highlight of his racing career was a horse called Youlookhot, who was named 2017 Older Pacer of the Year by the Ohio Harness Horsemen’s Association.

Mr. Stovall loved playing cards, and watching the races and all sports. He also took pride in mowing the paddocks and yard.

He was a member of the Ohio Harness Horsemen’s Association, USTA and the Lebanon Eagles.

He was preceded in death by his son, Doug; daughter, Debi Farquhar; parents, Brooks and Nancy Irene; and sister, Bettie Carole George. He is survived by his wife of 29 years, Lois; children, Kelley Brown, Angi, Chris and Mark; stepchildren, William Freeze and Barry Freeze; grandchildren, Jessica Fitzgerald, Kara Berger, Kristin Farquhar, Cody, Brittany Eades, Austin Duncan, Jeremy Langley, Dylan Pittman and Justin Sutherland; several great-grandchildren; brother, James; sister, Carolyn Young; many nieces and nephews; and a host of friends including Larry Landon, Al Van Schaik, Mel Stanley and Mary Lou Stovall.

The family would like to thank the nurses and aides at Quaker Heights for the incredible and loving care of Mr. Stovall, especially during his final days.

Orson Weaver
Orson Lester “Buck” Weaver, 91, of Harvard, Ill., formerly of Sharon, Wis., died Feb. 8, 2019, at his home.

Mr. Weaver was born Feb. 2, 1928, in Sharon to Adam Lester and Josephine D. (Stoxen) Weaver. “Buck” Weaver, as he was known to his harness racing friends and family, was a graduate of Sha-ron High School. He was drafted at the end of World War II, and eventually used the GI Bill to earn a bachelor’s degree and teaching certificate from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

Mr. Weaver eventually purchased a farm south of Sharon and installed a half-mile racetrack. For the next several decades, he broke, trained and raced Standardbreds for himself and a few other stables. Most notably, he broke yearlings for Merlyn Welch and the Busse Stables of Kirkland, Ill. One of their most successful ventures together was Roxburgh Bob, winner of the Maywood Pace. Later, Mr. Weaver had horses with the Nolens of Harvard, Ill.

He will always be remembered for the Jesters and Friscos, foals born and broke on his farm to race. His children, Sara and Wayne, grew up training and racing horses alongside their father, and continue in the sport to this day.

In addition to training and racing horses, Mr. Weaver was known throughout the Midwest as an announcer. He called races primarily in Illinois and Wisconsin, but also ventured into Michigan and Iowa. For almost 60 years, he was known as the voice of the Northern Illinois Colt Association, and also served on its board of directors. In 2004, the Wisconsin Harness Horse Association inducted him into its Hall of Fame.

On July 26, 1966, he married Lucille Schulz of Sharon. They were together for more than 50 years, until she passed away in May 2017.

Mr. Weaver is survived by his children, Sara M. and Wayne L., as well as many cousins. In addi-tion to his wife, he was preceded in death by his half-sister, Annetta Speiss. HB

Please send obituaries to In Memoriam, Hoof Beats, 6130 S. Sunbury Rd., Westerville, OH 43081-9309. You can also send them by email to news@ustrotting.com, or by fax to 844.229.1338 (toll free U.S. and Canada) or 614.224.4575 (outside the U.S. and Canada). Obituaries are subject to editing for clarity and space.

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