Marvin Bachrad, 82, a member of harness racing’s Communicators Hall of Fame, a former president of the U.S. Harness Writers Association (USHWA) with 35 years as a director of the association, and a past winner of the Harness Horse Youth Foundation Service to Youth Award, died on Nov. 30, 2018, in Phoenix, Ariz.
Born to the late Max and Freda (Lipow) Bachrad on Dec. 28, 1935, Mr. Bachrad was already doing sports journalism while at Norristown High School when he gained a following by entering sports trivia contests and acquiring a massive collection of sporting equipment.
After graduation, he served his country as director of the Armed Forces Radio Services camp station in Fort Jackson, S.C. He worked in radio, starting in Beckley, W.Va., then transitioned back to the Philadelphia area, where he conducted the first sports call-in show.
Mr. Bachrad worked as an announcer at Liberty Bell Park and was an assistant publicist to the legendary “Colonel” Dave Herman at Brandywine Raceway. Upon Herman’s retirement after the 1979 season, Mr. Bachrad became the track’s director of publicity. Working with the Electronic Race Patrol of Sid Alpert and his son, Mark, with whom he worked while doing Thoroughbred publicity at Garden State Park, Mr. Bachrad was a pioneer of pre-race handicapping on tracks’ closed-circuit TV system, and an innovator in doing attractive and detailed video profiles of horses and horsemen competing at Brandywine.
Mr. Bachrad later worked at TIMES: in Harness, the Harrisburg, Pa., publication that was the first major entry into the electronic reporting of harness racing news. He then was summoned back to Delaware when the state passed slot machine gaming.
Mr. Bachrad served as publicity director for more than two decades at Dover Downs.
He also gave back to the sport on a national level. He was president of USHWA from 1992-1993, and at the time of his passing, his 35 years of being a director for the organization was tops among living directors of USHWA. He was a president of the Harness Publicists Association, winning that group’s Golden Pen Award.
In 1997, Mr. Bachrad was inducted into the Communicators Hall of Fame—the pinnacle of his many achievements. His 1988 Service to Youth Award also meant very much to him. He also won the Harness Tracks of America Dan Patch Award for excellence in communications in 2005, and received the Special Appreciation Award from the Delaware Standardbred Owners Association in 2010.
Mr. Bachrad was a harness horse owner for more than 40 years, from the early days of Liberty Bell, when a newcomer named Herve Filion was the trainer/driver of his horses, right up to July of this year, when his sophomore trotting filly Star Sapphire won a $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund Championship at the state fair at Harrington, Del. He possessed a detailed knowledge of pedigrees.
Mr. Bachrad leaves behind two brothers, Allen (Marci) and Ronald (Eileen). He also leaves behind four nieces/nephews and six grandnieces/grandnephews. His “extended family,” a lifetime of colleagues and friends, will also greatly miss his sagacity and kindness.
Memorial contributions in his honor may be made at your discretion or to the Mitzvah Circle, 1561 Gehman Rd., Harleysville, PA 19438.
Steven C. Beck, 74, former superintendent of Hempt Farms, died Oct. 30, 2018.
Born in Freeport, Ill., Mr. Beck went into military service of the country soon after high school. While with the U.S. Navy, he was stationed in, among other places, Cuba and Panama when they were international hot spots. He ended his military service attached to a Marine battalion deployed in Vietnam.
In 1968, Mr. Beck went to work at Hempt Farms and spent almost a quarter century at the Me-chanicsburg, Pa., nursery.
He rose through the management ranks there until retiring as farm su-perintendent in 1992.
He met his wife, Betty Ann Hobbs—known as Ann—in 1971, and they were married a year later. After Mr. Beck left Hempt, he and Ann established the small breeding operation Anchor Farm in Carlisle, Pa., until full retirement in 2006. They lived in Mechanicsburg at the time of Mr. Beck’s passing.
Besides Ann, Mr. Beck leaves behind twin sons, Craig and Jeff, along with six grandchildren. He was preceded in death by a sister, Barbara Bacus.
Robert B. Cottrell, 84, died Nov. 22, 2018.
He was blessed to spend recent days and Thanksgiving with those who meant the most to him—family.
He will be missed by many longtime friends, many of whom worked with him in equestrian training and harness racing.
He was one of the leading trainer/drivers at Buffalo Raceway, Batavia Downs and Vernon Downs during the late 1950s through the 1970s.
Some of his memorable horses were New York Sire Stakes winner Gentlewoman; open pacers G I Grattan, Tuxedo Bill and Frosty Paige; and open trotters Tarport Lou, Sona Ross and Farmington. His favorite, the last one he campaigned, was Rocket Red.
He is survived by his loving wife, Sally; children, Dr. Timothy (Lisa) and Tracy (Joseph) Ilvento; grandsons, Connor, Sean and Alex Ilvento; and sister, Joan Light.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary or Brockport First Baptist Church, P.O. Box 378, Brockport, NY 14420.
Mary Lou Dondarski
Mary Lou Dondarski, 74, the longtime office manager at the Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown, died Nov. 8, 2018.
Ms. Dondarski began her career in harness racing when she transitioned from a local insurance office to the stable, working as a groom for entrepreneur and horse owner Bill Brooks and the Benny Webster Stable. She cared for open pacer Afella Rainbow p,4,1:55.4 ($323,860) among many others in the late ’70s.
She then returned “frontside,” working in the race office at Freehold Raceway, at Los Alamitos Racecourse and at the Daily Racing Form before being hired at the Hambletonian Society in New Jersey in 1993, where she remained until her passing.
She was also the assistant race secretary for the New Jersey Sire Stakes Fair program when New Jersey-breds had a flourishing state-bred pro-gram.
Though she started as an accounts payable manager, there was very little that she didn’t help expedite or execute at the Society, from stakes payments to sponsorships. She was a detailed and thorough financial manager, but what she loved the most and was perhaps best recognized for was her tremendous creativity.
One of her most popular projects was the Hambletonian buttons, which she started designing in 1998. Months before the race she took the list of Hambo eligibles and pored over clip art and illus-trations to create buttons specific to each horse that might enter the race. They were an instant tradition, and can be seen in every Hambletonian winner’s circle photo through 2018, adorning owners and fans’ lapel pins.
An accomplished equine artist, Ms. Dondarski’s portraits were highly sought after, and grace the walls of racetracks and homes of Hall of Famers, as well as those who were simply fans of her por-traits of champion Standardbreds, favorite racehorses, pets and glimpses of all facets of racetrack life.
She was also an expert and dogged collector, spending weekends scouring flea markets and auc-tions for memorabilia, and when a fledgling site for collectors called eBay.com was created, Ms. Dondarski quickly had the internet at her mercy. Once she set her sights on a genre—harness racing postcards, or advertising, or cigar box labels, buttons, or matchbooks—she would soon have a museum-quality collection.
Legendary Hall of Fame horses Dan Patch and Greyhound were her favorites, and her beautifully decorated office at the Hambletonian Society resembled a mini-museum of two of the most famous harness horses in history.
Ms. Dondarski was a seemingly endless source of unique donations and often offered her own paintings for every charity auction, horse rescue group, museum event, fundraiser, retirement cer-emony or any important event that followed her life’s work of supporting harness racing or marking harness racing’s historical importance.
For her selfless and benevolent efforts, she was recognized by the U.S. Harness Writers in 2006 with the sport’s LeeAnne Pooler Memorial Unsung Hero award; in 2013 with a President’s Award for support of the organization; and again as one of only 50 honorary USHWA members inducted since the organization was started in 1947, an honor that comprises 20 Hall of Famers past and present such as John Campbell, Delvin Miller, E. Roland Harriman and George Morton Levy.
Despite failing health that made everyday tasks difficult, Ms. Dondarski spent her last weeks as-sembling and shipping a large collection of memorabilia and art to the Round Barn in Lexington, Ky., for their Fall Stable of Memories fundraiser. She cherished her vacations in Lexington, and felt a personal responsibility to preserve the legacy and history of the Round Barn.
She is survived by sons, Anthony Dias (and granddaughters, Morgan, Jessica and Courtney Dias), Raymond Dias (and grandsons, Quentin and Jake) and William “BJ” Richards, and was preceded in death by her son, Kevin Dias. She will be sorely missed by her family, many friends and a large network of passionate and like-minded collectors.
Donations can be made to her favorite causes: Stable of Memories, P.O. Box 11073, Lexington, KY 40512-1073 and Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame, 240 Main St. Goshen, NY 10924.
William “Bill” Gale
William “Bill” Gale, 70, a member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame, died Nov. 19, 2018.
Mr. Gale was one of Canada’s leading drivers for a period that spanned the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s. Between 1982 and 1997, he recorded 16 consecutive $1 million-plus seasons.
During his career, he made 32,134 starts, won 6,376 times, and earned $41.7 million.
In the fall of 1991, at Pompano Park, he won a pair of Breeders Crown championships, as he guided King Conch to a world record 1:56.2 win in the $300,000 2-year-old colt trot and reined Three Wizzards to an upset victory over Die Laughing and Artsplace in the $357,000 Breeders Crown for 3-year-old pacing colts.
In 1991, Mr. Gale was honored with an O’Brien Award as Canada’s Driver of the Year following a season where he exceeded $3.2 million in purse earnings.
He was inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2015.
Terry Lee Kibler
Terry Lee Kibler, 60, of Woodstock, Va., died Nov. 26, 2018, at his home.
A graduate of Virginia Tech in 1980, Mr. Kibler owned a furniture store in Woodstock for more than 30 years. He was past president and a current board member of the Shenandoah County Fair Association as well as longtime racing secretary of the fair race meet.
Mr. Kibler took over as racing secretary of the county fair meet in 1987 after his father, who previously served in that position, passed away. Mr. Kibler was appointed to the fair board of directors the same year and had been the longest tenured board member before his death.
This past fall, Mr. Kibler and trainer Betsy Brown had seven different horses compete in Wood-stock. Calcutta, BP Burner, Uncle Ike and Believe In Him each won a race. TLK Caleb, Thelord-ismyshepard and Trot Away Marvin raced multiple times.
Among the best horses Mr. Kibler owned were Farmer Jones and Calcutta. The former, a Credit Winner gelding trotter, competed from 2004-2014, made 193 starts and earned $369,199. He was acquired by Mr. Kibler and his partners, Marvin Sigler and Pamela Wagner, for $16,000 as a wean-ling. In 2005, Farmer Jones and 2005 Hambletonian winner Vivid Photo swapped track and world records within a day of each other at Colonial Downs.
As a 3-year-old that fall, Farmer Jones set the Colonial mark for sophomore gelding trotters with a 1:53.4 effort in a Breeders championship prep race. A week later, Roger Hammer’s Vivid Photo shattered the time in a race that went in 1:52.3, but the very next day, Farmer Jones reclaimed the speed mark with a 1:52.2 clocking in a Breeders championship final. The following year, Mr. Kibler’s trotter set a track and world record for 4-year-old gelding trotters with a 1:53 time at the New Kent track.
Calcutta, a 9-year-old Tom Ridge trotting mare, still races and has competed often at both the county fair and Shenandoah Downs meets the past several years. She has bankrolled $212,768 and has 22 wins from 126 starts. In 2015, she equaled the older mare trotting record of 1:55.4 at Rosecroft Raceway.On Oct. 6 of last year, she captured her most recent win at Shenandoah Downs with Betsy Brown in the bike.
Scott Woogen, president of the Virginia Harness Horse Association, recalled Calcutta was the fastest 2-year-old in the country for a period of time.
ENS Bondsman was another horse owned by the Kibler-Sigler partnership. The Manley Brown trainee won the Maryland Sire Stake final for 3-year-old colt/gelding trotters in 2004. In all, ENS Bondsman won $112,497 from 23 career starts. He had 12 wins and a pair of seconds. His lifetime mark of 1:58.1 came at Colonial Downs.
Alice Mae Lambert-Kidd
Alice Mae Lambert-Kidd (nee Tinch), 80, of Lebanon, Ohio, died Nov. 7, 2018, at her residence, sur-rounded by her loving family.
Born April 26, 1938, in Franklin, Ohio, she was the daughter of Adel and Laura Mae (nee Eversole) Tinch and was a loving and devoted mother and grandmother.
She worked for many years as a nurse’s aide at the Otterbein Retirement Community and ran an antique store in Franklin, Ohio, with her sister, Ruth.
She also helped with the family horses and was a member of the USTA.
She was the youngest of nine children and was preceded in death by her parents; brothers, Ernest Tinch, Carl Tinch, Lawrence Tinch, Virgil Tinch, Russell Tinch, Cletus Tinch and Clark Tinch; and sister, Ruth McClain. She is survived by her son, Perry (Karianne) Lambert; grandchildren, Jodie, Jamie, Jimi, Laurie, Joseph and Amanda; 16 great-grandchildren; and many other family members and friends.
Robert “R.J.” Moore
Robert J. “R.J.” Moore, 61, died Nov. 3, 2018, at Community Hospital North in Indianapolis, Ind., fol-lowing an extended illness.
Mr. Moore was born Feb. 3, 1957, in Elwood to James and Shirley (Miller) Moore and lived in the Alexandria area most of his lifetime. He was a graduate of Alexandria-Monroe High School- Class of 1976.
He served briefly in the U.S. Navy from which he received a medical discharge.
He was the track superintendent at Hoosier Park in Anderson from 1999 to 2011. He had been track superintendent for Hollywood Gaming since 2014. He was also owner and operator of Track and Construction by R.J. for the past five years.
Mr. Moore was a member of the Indiana Standardbred Association and the Alexandria Eagles No. 1771.
He enjoyed harness racing, fishing, logging and his work. He was a fan of the Indianapolis Colts.
Mr. Moore is survived by his daughter, Leia; son, Bruce; grandson, Creeden Riddle; sister, Taffy Green; girlfriend, Karen Bland; nephew, Drew Green; and niece, Virginia Green. He was preceded in death by his parents and grandparents.
Memorial contributions are suggested to the American Thyroid Association through Noffze Fu-neral Home, 501 North Harrison St., Alexandria, IN 46001.
Francene Marie Nash
Francene Marie Nash, 72, died Nov. 25, 2018.
Born on March 12, 1946, Ms. Nash was the daughter of the late Frank and Nell Nash.
Her early life was spent in New Jersey and Jeffersonville, Ind. Later the family lived in Lake Charles, La., and Leominster, Mass., where Ms. Nash graduated from high school. She attended Boston University and the University of Kentucky, where she worked first for the Department of Agriculture and then in the Appalachian Center until her retirement.
Her 25-year involvement, along with that of her brother’s family, in Standardbred racing and breeding produced several noteworthy horses, including 2010 Horse of the Year Rock N Roll Heaven.
She is survived by her brother, Charles Cotton (Julie); nephews, Patrick (Christy) and Richey; niece, Audrey (Jason) Lowrey; and eight great-nieces and great-nephews.
Expressions of sympathy can be made to New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program (Stand-ardbred program) at www.horseadoption.com, or the Standardbred Retirement Foundation at www.adoptahorse.org.
John Schuberg, 80, died on Nov. 24, 2018, after a long battle with dementia. Mr. Schuberg, a resident of Perrysburg, Ohio, earned $1.9 million as a trainer and $406,564 as a driver.
Born and raised in Big Rapids, Mich., he was a graduate of Ferris State College and Central Michigan University and taught high school for 15 years.
He was also a longtime USTA director, representing District 2. He was elected to the board in 1986 and served for 25 years. He was active in harness racing as an owner, driver and trainer since 1955.
Before he stepped down as a director, Mr. Schuberg, who hailed from LaSalle, Mich., was very in-strumental in the hiring of the past two CEOs of the USTA while serving on the Executive Committee. An extremely talented horseman who raced at both the fairs and tracks throughout Ohio, Michigan and Indiana, he was a force at the fairs.
Mr. Schuberg was an expert at buying young stock and producing racehorses. One of his most highly regarded accomplishments, besides his actual children, was his longtime relationship with fellow horseman, Greg Bateson. Mr. Schuberg and Bateson were inseparable and successful for decades.
Gil “Doc” Seidner
Gil “Doc” Seidner, 77, died Nov. 7, 2018.
He was an oral surgeon who lived in Hewlett, N.Y., and owned numerous horses over the years through Meadow Drive Stable and other entities competing regularly at Roosevelt and Yonkers.
He also was an amateur driver in New York, competing regularly at Monticello. His love of the game was unmatched.
Charles “Chuck” Stillings
Charles M. “Chuck” Stillings Jr., 66, of DeLeon Springs, Fla., and formerly of Indianapolis, Ind., died on Oct. 6, 2018.
On Oct. 12, 1951, Mr. Stillings was born in Marion, Ohio, the second child of four and the only son of the late Charles M. Stillings Sr. and V. Maxine (Pickett) Petry. He grew up in Bucyrus, Ohio, and Grayson, Ky., moving to Galion, Ohio, to play football when he was a sophomore. He graduated from Galion High School in 1970.
Inheriting a love for horses from his father, Mr. Stillings began working with horses while still in high school. In the early 1970s, he worked with Terry Holton, one of Ohio’s leading drivers. During Mr. Stillings’ nearly 50 years in horse racing, he bred, owned and trained more than 100 horses, whose combined earnings totaled more than $2.5 million.
The first official horse he owned was Ascendant, although he was also known for Fast Freddie Mojo, Postmark, Battle Axe, Battle Mage, Radar Contact, and his most recent prize winner, Cumber-land Gap. Cumberland Gap earned Mr. Stillings the 2018 Ohio Breeders Championship at the Dela-ware County Fair in September.
In addition to racing horses, Mr. Stillings also worked as an air traffic controller for 20 years. He trained in Oklahoma City, then began his career in Longmont, Colo., handling all types of high-altitude, en route air traffic. He relocated to the Indianapolis Center, working with en route air traffic for the remainder of his career.
After his retirement in 2003, he started wintering in DeLeon Springs, Fla., becoming a resident in 2010. His life continued to revolve around horses even as he struggled with health issues the past seven years.
He is survived by his three sisters, Kathleen (Travis) Ivey, Sue Powelson and Barbara (Ritchie); stepsiblings, Barbara (Jerry), Marilyn (David) Boyd and Ken (JoEllen) Ruehle; and numerous nieces and nephews as well as countless friends.
Including his parents, Mr. Stillings was preceded in death by stepmother Vera; brother-in-law Ronald Powelson; and nephews Stevie Powelson and Steve Butterfield.
Memorial contributions may be made to any diabetes or heart association, or to a charity of the donor’s choice.
Nicholas J. Wall, 90, of Marion, Ohio, died Nov. 13, 2018, with his loving family by his side.
Mr. Wall was born on May 9, 1928, to Lester E. and Hester (Kuntz) Wall in Richwood, Ohio. He attended Richwood High School and was a member of the graduating class of 1946. He was a fierce competitor in the classroom and in athletics, where he finished at the top of his class and held the single-game scoring record in both basketball and football.
After high school, he attended The Ohio State University. He returned to Richwood in 1949 to run the family business, the Richwood Lumber Co. In the 1950s and 1960s, he partnered with contractor Frank Postell and together they built many of the finer homes in Marion.
In 1949, Mr. Wall married his high school sweetheart and the love of his life, Dottie (Cheney), who survives. They would have celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary in May.
Mr. Wall and his brother, Bill, founded Wall Bros Stable in the late 1950s and raced harness horses primarily in the Chicago area. In the early 1970s, Mr. Wall teamed up with trainer/driver Joe Marsh Jr. and raced horses such as Jefferson and Ajax, but his favorite horse was an old trotter by the name of Mudge Demon. He started him 84 times and the horse never made a break.
Although he remained in harness racing for the remainder of his life, Mr. Wall became a licensed realtor in 1974 and formed Wall Real Estate in 1976. He was a successful farm broker until his re-tirement in the early 1990s. During his lifetime as a businessman, he didn’t turn his best friends into customers; he turned his customers into best friends.
Mr. Wall loved to fish and enjoyed taking his friends perch and walleye fishing at Lake Erie and Escanaba, Mich. His greatest fishing feat was the first and only time he went deep-sea fishing and reeled in a 9½ ft., 165 lb. blue marlin off the coast of Ft. Lauderdale.
He was also an avid golfer and enjoyed golfing with his buddies at Kings Mill, where he was known to have made a bet or two. He aced the second hole at Marion Country Club and eagled the third.
After Mr. Wall retired, he and Dottie sold their winter home in Florida so that he could proudly watch and sideline coach his grandkids in all their sporting events. He was, by far, their biggest fan.
Besides his loving and devoted Dottie, he is survived by his sons, Charlie (Myrna), Nick (Jody) and Joe (Kelli); daughter, Julie (Jeff) Robinson; very dear brother, Dr. Lester; sister, Anabel Sult; many nieces and nephews he loved very much; grandchildren of whom he was so proud, Jesse, Bart, Bret, Nick, Ashley Thompson, Erin Russo, Hailey Rorie, McKenzie Price, Trent Phipps, Brooke Vermillion, Haden and Paityn; and 15 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by a brother, William K.; and a sister, Rosemary Taylor.
Memorial contributions may be made to Richwood First United Methodist Church, 18 S. Fulton St., Richwood, OH 43344, St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital at www.stjude.org, or the Standardbred Retirement Foundation at www.adoptahorse.org.
Wallace W. Wimbrow, 80, died on Nov. 2, 2018.
Born on Dec. 6, 1937, in Hallwood, Va., he was the son of the late William Garland Wimbrow and Evelyn Lankford Wimbrow.
Mr. Wimbrow graduated from Pocomoke High School. He worked for NASA security for 10 years and received special recognition for his work there. He then moved to Delaware and was employed by Shellhorn and Hill, Inc. in Wilmington, Del. He met and married Janet Denn in 1983 and they were blessed to have 26 years together until her death in 2009.
Mr. Wimbrow trained and drove Standardbreds for many years and was a member of the USTA. He drove on the Grand Circuit, and at Rosecroft, Harrington and Ocean Downs. He had such a great love for the horses and the sport; he would often go to the races, just to watch the horses.
He is survived by his brother, William “Geedie” (JoEllen); stepdaughters, Patsy Hill, Nora Meeds, JoAnne Seaman, Debbie Taylor and Janet Lee Haigh Bivona; and nieces, Wendy (Jeff) Maynor and Anne (Steve) Sparkman. In addition to his wife and parents, he was preceded in death by a son, Wallace W. Jr., in 1991.
Memorial contributions may be made to your local SPCA or the Salvation Army at give.salvationarmyusa.org.
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