Originally distributed by Kentucky Horse Park
It is with deep sadness that the Kentucky Horse Park announced the death of nine-time World’s Champion CHGypsy Supreme, an American Saddlebred show horse who lived in the park’s Hall of Champions since 2001.
He was humanely euthanized on the morning of Wednesday, December 22, surrounded by people who loved him, after a long battle with laminitis as a result of Cushings disease. He had taken a sudden downturn the day before. Kathy Hopkins, Equine Director for the Kentucky Horse Park stated, “Our x-rays showed severe lack of circulation in both of Gypsy’s front feet. Due to the severity and the fact that we had reached the point where we could no longer maintain a reasonable level of comfort, our veterinarian recommended euthanasia. Our team was in full agreement that this was the right decision on Gypsy’s behalf.”
John Nicholson, Executive Director of the Kentucky Horse Park, said, “Gypsy was an outstanding representative of his breed in our Hall of Champions, but beyond that, he was a cherished member of our park family. Our staff and Dr. Robert Agne from Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital worked very hard for a lot of years to keep Gypsy comfortable and give him a good standard of living despite his laminitis because they were so devoted to him. They loved him and knew him well enough to say good-bye when it finally became necessary. The Saddlebred world has lost a great show horse, his fans have lost a legend, and our park has lost a fine friend.”
Bred by William and Pamela Richardet, the chestnut son of Sultan’s Flashdance out of Kalarama’s Gypsy Lady, was owned by Southwood Partners LLC, Donald and Ronnie Hess, for their daughter Emily Hess.
CHGypsy Supreme was voted the People’s Choice World Champion for the Decade of the 1990s. He was a five-gaited multi-titled world champion in the open, ladies, amateur and junior divisions. Winning first the Illinois State Fair Three-Year-Old Five-Gaited title in 1990, he won his first world titles of Junior Five-Gaited Stallion and Gelding, and Junior Five-Gaited Grand Champion in 1991. CHGypsy Supreme also won numerous Ladies Five-Gaited Gelding and Championship titles through 1997, followed by Junior Exhibitor Five-Gaited Championship titles in 1998 and 1999, for a total of nine world championship titles among numerous other awards.
He was one of the most photographed horses at the Kentucky Horse Park, because his stall was near the walkway to the Hall of Champions, and he spent a large part of each day with his head out of the window, welcoming visitors as they arrived.
Robin Bush, one of Gypsy’s caretakers for many years, said, “Gypsy was a really fun horse to be around because he had a sense of humor. People who didn’t know anything about Saddlebreds often fell in love with the breed when they met him. They were first attracted to him because he looked so noble, but his personality is what got to them. He liked to bite at the stall door to startle people because he got a kick out of watching them jump back away from the door, but it was always in fun. He also loved to have his neck scratched and would bow his neck to such an extent that he would nearly collapse on the floor from the pleasure of it.”
Bush continued, “Of all of us, Gypsy’s favorite groom was Gene Carter, who works summers here at the Hall of Champions. Gypsy was always his best when he was with Gene.”
CHGypsy Supreme has been buried at the Hall of Champions in a place of honor near other Saddlebreds CHImperator, CHSkywatch, and CHWild-Eyed And Wicked.
The park has requested that donations be made in Gypsy’s memory to the Laminitis Institute at the New Bolton Center, 382 West Street Rd, Kennett Square, PA 19348, phone (610) 444-5800.