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Teresa Leake

A great lady that always had a smile, Teresa Leake, was born on May 15, 1967 and passed away on Wednesday, May 18, 2016. Teresa was a resident of Inola, Oklahoma at the time of her passing. She was married to Randal. She loved everyone she came in contact with. She loved trail rides, and Barrel Racing. She was the leader of the Barrel Racing and the Trail Ride Ministries at the Cowboy church called "Cowboy Country Fellowship" in Talala, Oklahoma 74080. She is missed dearly by her family and all her friends.


French Flash Hawk "Bozo" - 1987 - 2016
By Laura Lambert

He was a World Champion Barrel Horse. He was an AQHA Horse of the year. He was a Wrangler National Finals Qualifier. He was a champion Derby and Sweepstakes barrel horse. His accomplishments are pages long. Most importantly though, he was a member of the family.

Kristie remembered, "He was the first thing Chuck saw in the morning and the last thing he saw every night. He was an important member of our family, and we loved him more than words can say."

"Bozo," as the world knew him took on life on his own terms. He was deemed an outlaw when the Peterson's purchased him as a two-year-old, where he was ridden in the feedlot. It didn't take long for an incredible bond to form between Bozo and Peterson. She knew everything about him and understood his independence. To her, he was so much more than a barrel horse.

"Bozo was meant to do what he did. He absolutely loved running barrels, in fact, I believe it was his passion. Competing made him happy and he always ran with his heart - every single run. He was independent his whole life, never needing or wanting much affection. He liked to be on his own and do his own thing but, when it came to running barrels, he loved to please," Peterson said.

Not many of us will have the fortune to own a horse like Bozo and only a few will truly understand how much of a connection he and his owners had. He was a true champion that in keeping with his tradition, picked his own time to pass on.

"We were a little worried about him this year because he was 29 and we knew how hot it was going to be during the summer. He was so sensitive to mosquitos and bugs in general. With all the rain we were having we knew it was going to be hard on him. We had even considered taking him to Colorado with us this summer when we left, but we didn't know how well he would handle all the travel," Kristie said.

Bozo died peacefully at their home. He knew it was time and they did, too. He left an incredible legacy behind. It was him and his success that led the Peterson family to the Frenchmans Guy bloodlines. The family had also just decided to purchase a PC Frenchmans Hayday (Bozo's full brother) bred broodmare so that there would always be a little bit of Bozo on their place.

In a fast paced world where horses are bought and sold, traded, and people move on, Kristie Peterson and Bozo had that special bond where each loved and respected the other.

Kalee Chandler

It is with deep sadness we announce the passing of Ms. Kalee Chandler, 12 of Butler, Missouri today, May 23, 2016 at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri.

Read the complete obituary here, and Ms. Kalee's story here.

Several fundraising events will take place in the upcoming days: There will be a benefit for Kalee on Thursday, May 26 at 11 a.m. at Mo-Kan Livestock. Anyone wishing to donate an animal or funds to the benefit can call their office at 660-679-6535; A Boot Drive will be set up at the 4-Way Stop at Passaic on Saturday, 5/28; and donations can be deposited at the Community First Bank, 915 W. Fort Scott St. in Butler, MO, 64730. They can also be mailed to P.O. Box 407.

Our hearts go out to our friend Martha Wright on the death of Ed. Ed was one of the hardest working men in our field, traveling the country and teaching us all how to do it the Wright way. He was one in a million and we will all miss him greatly. Keep Martha and their family in your prayers.

Edwin Fuller Wright, 69, of Dublin, submitted his life to our Lord Father in Heaven on Monday, March 28, 2016. Ed was born in Onslow County, North Carolina to Edwin Chester Wright and Miriam Beryl Fuller on October 14, 1946. Ed was raised in Gatesville, Texas and at an early age developed a deep love and a special way with animals, especially horses. He spent his childhood riding, roping, and wanting to be a cowboy. He attended college at Eastern New Mexico University and met the love of his life, Martha Tompkins Wright at a college rodeo. They were married in January of 1972, settled in Erath County, and together became one of the most successful duos in the sport of barrel racing for over 40 years. Ed will gladly tell you that Martha's way with horses is a God given talent but, he on the other hand, did not come by it as easily and really had to work at his craft. Ed was a talented roper and steer wrestler, having qualified to the Texas Circuit Finals multiple times and later earning a PRCA Gold Card. Through the decades Ed and his wife raised, trained, and competed on some of the best horses in the country. The /W brand became synonymous with GREAT barrel racing horses. Ed was also a world renowned clinician, teaching barrel racing clinics for over 3 decades, nearly 40 weekends a year, in states from coast to coast and Canada. He loved helping students learn to better communicate with their equine partners through timing and feel.


LACOOCHEE - In this rural Pasco County community, Lara Dewees stood out.

A rodeo queen and national barrel racing champion, an accomplished singer and beloved schoolteacher, Dewees was somewhat of a celebrity in the town of fewer than 2,000 people.

So her death after a Feb. 20 fall while participating in a rodeo in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, was all the more shocking.

A leap-year baby, Dewees would have turned 28 years old on Monday. She died from her injuries in a Hattiesburg hospital a few days before her birthday, leaving her lifelong friends and close-knit family devastated.

"This was a real tragedy," said Don Surrency, who attends First Baptist Church of Lacoochee with Dewees' family and watched her grow up. "Everybody here knew her. We're just all broken up."


Tribute to Michel Otten. When you meet someone with an incredible zest for life, they leave an impression that lasts forever. Michel Otten was one of those people. She was a strong, independent woman who had a love of life and laughter and a generous spirit. Michel was known for several aspects of her life. But my family knew her best for her love of horses.

When the Matthews were traveling to barrel races every weekend, they met Michel. She was riding a crazy mare she called Trixie and her buckskin gelding, Slick, at that time. Slick had an annoying habit of ducking the first barrel and it was Michel's goat to fix that problem. Anyone who remembers her riding that horse remembers that plastic bat that she used to use. In true Michel style, through grit and determination, she broke that gelding of his bad habit and went on to do very well with him. Michel's hauling buddy, Julie, went on to ride Trixie until she had a barrel horse of her own. While Michel was riding Slick, my mom was riding her little black horse, Cool. Just like Michel and Mary Jo, Slick and Cool became best friends. They would squeal like little mares when they saw each other. It didn't matter how long they'd been apart, they were always excited to see each other, just like their riders. My mom often says that those were some of the best times of her life, sitting around at barrel races telling stories, sharing laughs, and evaluating and reevaluating their runs.
My mom told me about a barrel race that Michel was running once where her shirt got caught on the saddle horn. It popped all the buttons off her shirt and it flew open in the middle of her run. In true Michel fashion she never skipped a beat and continued driving her horse through the rest of the run. Later she told everyone, "I was getting a good run, I wasn't gonna let that stop me!" When Slick got hurt, Michel began riding her big black horse, Smoke. She would tell everybody that he was a registered paint, but you couldn't always see his one spot. If you knew Michel, you knew that she had a colorful explanation of where that spot was located. Watching Michel ride that gelding, you got a true sense of what a tremendous rider she really was. That gelding had so much power, but she just stayed with him. He would get so excited at the gate, but Michel never got flustered; she just waited until he was ready to make his run, and boy the runs she made on Smoke.

Michel's love of animals didn't end with horses, she loved her dogs, too. Everybody knew Michel's bulldogs as well as they knew her. she treated them like her children. They went with her everywhere. They rode shotgun when she traveled, she lifted them (all 75 pounds worth or more) into the bed at night, and they ate better than most people I know. Which brings me to another memory of Michel that many people have, her cooking. she loved to cook for her dogs and everyone else. Anyone that's ever traveled with Michel or parked by her at a barrel race knew to plan on some great meals. Nothing would do until she convinced Bruce to drag out the full-sized grill that they hauled with them, and she would fire it up and cook some of the best food you'd ever tasted. There were times that everyone else should have been waiting on Michel and fixing meals for her, but she wouldn't hear of it. She would insist that it wasn't any trouble.

That was the thing about Michel, she would do just about anything she could for the people she met throughout her life. She would be your biggest cheerleader when you ran a barrel race. You could hear her above anyone else. She would laugh with you during the great times and lift you up and support you during the low times. Michel and my mom shared many joys and laughs throughout the years. But Michel was a true friend, and true friends are there when times are hard. They comforted each other through the loss of pets, each knowing that special bond that the other shared with their animals. They comforted each other through the loss of great horses when only a fellow cowgirl can understand, and Michel was a true cowgirl.

She was one tough cookie! She didn't let chemo treatments stop her from doing what she loved. I don't know very many people that could go out and barrel race a week after a treatment, but Michel could and she'd beat the pants off ya! But I think the real reason Michel was able to do so much during that time was because God sent a guardian angel to look after her. Bruce came into Michel's life and it was forever changed. She was so used to doing things all by herself and just the way she wanted that only a very special person could keep up with her, but Bruce did. She had a traveling partner, someone to cook for and someone to love and take care of her the way shge loved and took care of everyone else throughout her life. If it weren't for Bruce, Michel wouldn't have been able to travel and barrel race for as long as she did. He hauled her to races so she could qualify for the NBHA World Show. That was a dream he helped her fulfill. It doesn't seem possible that not even three months ago, Michel was in Perry, Georgia, where she qualified in the top 100 in the 2D and was just a couple hundredths of a second away from winning a saddle. She did come home with a belt buckle and lots of great pictures, videos, and memories.

Bruce didn't just haul Michel to the barrel races, but he also trained one of the last horses she rode, sweet Stoli (although if you asked Michel she always had to retrain him after Bruce rode him for awhile). Stoli was such a great mount for Michel. Sometimes it was almost like he sensed that she wasn't quite riding the way she used to and he'd slow up just a little and wait on her. If you ever heard Michel tell the story of the beginning of Stoli's life and how rough it was, it's like he knew she rescued him and he was taking care of her in return.

Michel also had other very special people in her life that helped her through her treatments and were there to take care of her when she needed them. Michel's aunt, Margie, spent many hours by her bedside and at the hospital with her making sure Michel had everything she needed. Her cousin, Nancy, made many trips in the wee hours of the morning to get Michel to and from her chemo treatments, and was there to help Michel with anything she needed. To all those people who helped Michel and stood by her through the hardest time of her life, those of us who cherished her friendship will be forever grateful. It's not easy for me to think about barrel racing without Michel. The arenas will be a little quieter during our runs, the food won't be as good, and the all the stories will be without her colorful additions, but Michel would want us to ride on. She would want us to laugh and remember. So, to you Michel Otten, one of the greatest cowgirls I've ever known, I say: Ride on, cowgirl, ride on.

TRINITY, NC - David "Scott" Kennedy, 45, passed away on Monday, October 13, 2014.

Scott dedicated his life to his passion for horsemanship. He was mentor to a countless number of riders and passed on his knowledge and love of barrel racing.

Scott was loved by many, known for his sweet smile and friendly spirit.

While his physical presence is gone, he will remain with those who were fortunate enough to know him.

A celebration of his life will be held on Sunday, October 19, 2014, at 3:00 p.m. at CCRA Arena in Robbins, N.C.. Read more...

Jeanine McMinn spent her life teaching people to ride, tragically it was a freak accident involving a horse that led to her death.
In Magnoila, the stables at McMinn Quarter Horses are quiet.
Something is missing, the cornerstone.
"Strength. She was the pillar," her husband Don McMinn said through tears.
McMinn and her husband started decades ago teaching kids about horses, "We always wanted kids to stay off the streets. So we did everything we could," Don recalled.
On Sunday McMinn and a half-dozen of her students and horses from Magnolia were in Waco competing in the National Barrel Racing Championships.
The family says it was a freak accident.

Virginia Ann Hutto, 24 of Eastland, TX formerly of Waynesboro, MS, died Monday Oct 14 from injuries sustained from a wreck on Ranger Hill. Virginia was born July 8, 1989 in Waynesboro, MS. Virginia is survived by her parents Danny and Cathryn Hutto of Eastland and the love of her life Mason Harris of Cisco.

A short graveside farewell was held 9:00AM Friday at Corinth Cemetery. Virginia took her final ride in the back of the ISCA National Champion, 1951 Red Ford Pickup that Virginia was instrumental in the winning of the title National Champion.

She will be missed.

Megan Danielle Stockstill, 29, of Sandy Hook, MS, passed unexpectedly Monday, September 16, 2013, at her residence in Sandy Hook, MS, where she and fiance Talmadge Green owned and operated a beautiful horse facility. Funeral services will be held at 2pm, on Saturday, September 21, 2013 at Woodlawn Pentecostal Church in Columbia, MS. Burial will be in Hurricane Creek Baptist Cemetery. The Reverends Brad Ford and Scott Murphy will preside over services.

Ms. Stockstill was a member of Good Hope Baptist Church of Purvis, MS She was President of Team Talmadge, and a member of the NBHA, BBR, WPRA, and other equestrian barrel racing associations. An accomplished barrel racer, and avid race horse owner, Megan found her passion with young people and this was most apparent when you saw the young riders of Team Talmadge and abroad, achieve their goals.

She is survived by the love of her life, Talmadge Green of Sandy Hook, MS, a son, Sterling Talmadge Green of Sandy Hook, parents; Bennett Owen and Debra (Howard) Stockstill of Purvis, MS, stepson, T. Green, stepdaughter, Desiree Green, both of Commerce, GA, a brother, Ashley Stockstill (Amber) of Columbia, grandparents; Jean Howard, and Elaine Stockstill of Columbia, and (Father in Law) J.R. Green of Pelzer, SC, three nephews; Tyler Cagle, Tristan Stockstill, and Tayden Stockstill, and many friends.

Pallbearers are; Michael T. Green, Lenell Dean, Jason Willis, Clayton Crigger, JohnMcNeese, Ellis Irwin, Dana Sumrall, Rodney Davis, David Bush, Jim Warner, and Glenn Angelle.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to; Megans Memorial Scholarship Fund, 316 Mt. Vernon St. Troy, SC 29848  Read more...

Melissa Lynne Lewallen, 28, of Waco, passed away Monday, Jan. 21, 2013, at her home with her family by her side. Memorial services will be 11 a.m. Friday, Jan. 25, at Meadowbrook Baptist Church with Pastor Cary Killough officiating.

Melissa was born on March 9, 1984, in Bradenton, Fla., to Michael and Laura Purdy. She graduated from Lakewood Ranch High School in Bradenton, Fla. Melissa married Joshua Lewallen on Dec. 27, 2003

Melissa loved horses all of her life.; barrel racing and training horses was a passion. She was an amazing athlete, playing soccer from the time she was five, all the way through high school. Her family was most important to her and her three little girls were her joy. She had childlike faith in the Lord.

Shavon M. Howard, 29, of Atkins, passed away Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012, at St. Mary's Regional Medical Center in Russellville.

She was born January 2, 1983, in Morrilton, the daughter of Allen and Beverly Austin Davis.

She was a member of the Atkins Riding Club, Cowgirls for Christ, Arkansas Valley Horse Show Association, National Barrel Horse Association, Barrel Racing for a Cure, and the Yell County Riding Club. She was a 3-time State Keyhole Champion and the 2002 State Junior High Point Champion. She won 5 saddles on 5 different horses and won countless awards in her life. She was an accountant at Kent Dollar CPA.

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