Join the Oklahoma Paint Horse Club in Memorializing the Wonderful Life of Ashley Marie Huntington
In times of great tragedy, the horse world has proven to rise up in any way they can help. Unfortunately, the tragedy that we speak of is the loss of APHA competitor Ashley Marie Huntington. This beloved young woman was part of the Oklahoma Paint Horse Club (OPHC), and was “an inspiration and very important to many equestrians throughout the American Paint Horse Association.” Ashley was battling with a longtime illness that finally claimed her life in October of this year.
The OPHC says that they “are grateful for the times we had with Ashley and the amazing spirit she exhibited during her illness. It should be noted that Ashley was who she was during her illness because of who she was before her illness. She could light up a room with her infectious smile. God blessed us with a beautiful angel to serve as an example to all, and can take comfort in the knowledge that Ashley is no longer suffering and in pain. We, her horse show friends, will never forget the courage she displayed in her quest to continue showing, often through insurmountable pain.”
Knowing that they wanted to turn “tragedy into triumph,” the OPHC knew that they wanted to do something to memorialize Ashley to always remember her wonderful spirit. The club hosts a silent auction at their annual Holiday Classic Horse Show in Oklahoma City to benefit various causes such as Challenged Riders, entries for the AjPHA Youth Team Tournament, and other great causes for their club and horse shows. This year, OPHC will host a Western Pleasure Calcutta class as well as an auction to raise funds for a memorial scholarship. The Green Country Paint Horse Club of Oklahoma, who Ashley was a member of, petitioned APHA for a scholarship. Although it was approved, $25,000 must be raised to endow the Ashley Marie Huntington Memorial Scholarship.
The OPHC reached out to us at PleasureHorse.com asking for assistance. Joe spoke with Shane Watson of Equine Auction Exchange, who agreed to donate his auction services to this cause. “It would be an honor and a privilege to donate our services,” said Shane when asked. “We are somewhat choosy because we receive a number of these types of requests but, this is a great organization and the items that have been donated are excellent should raise quite a bit of money.”
The club decided that not only merchandise should be auctioned off, but also breeding and training. Erin Bradshaw, friend and fellow Gibbs Show Horse team member, offered a breeding to the multiple APHA World and Reserve World Champion stallion John Simon. John was a favorite of Ashley’s, and the club was overjoyed to have such a great stallion in their auction. Erin helped the auction to grow and suggested to have it online so that all could bid.
Other generous donations include a month of training with Gibbs Show Horses, donated by Jenna Hyde and Jeffrey Gibbs; Peggy Knaus donated a breeding to All Time Fancy; Kathi Sappington and Chad Christensen recruited ten more stallions in a mere two hours: Born To Be Blazing (AQHA), Double Up Investment (AQHA/APHA), Greatmindsthinkaluke (AQHA), Hot N Blazing (AQHA), Hot Ones Only (AQHA), Hubba Hubba Huntin (AQHA), Original Cowboy (AQHA/APHA), VS Code Red (AQHA), VS Flatline (AQHA) and Zippos Sensation (APHA)! Lazy Luvah (APHA) has also been donated, as well as a custom show vest from Kris’ Kustoms.
Bidding begins online on December 23 and ends the 30th. There will be an online bidding beginning December 22nd for one mane braiding by Brittney Taylor for the Holiday Classic. The bidding for a mane braiding ends the 26th. In addition to the online auction, there will be a Silent Auction on December 31st at the Holiday Classic. To view the auction site, as well as the items, please click here. To visit the OPHC site for more information, please click here.
Additional donations can be made by contacting Kathi Sappington at (405) 314-3588 or Tracy Grasz at (405) 831-6754.
We at PleasureHorse.com are so pleased to be part of such a wonderful cause, and to help support and memorialize the beautiful life that was Ashley Marie Huntington.