with permission from
Voice of the Tennessee Walking Horse magazine,
By Vickie Presley Mazzola
The Tennessee Walking horse industry has lost one of
the most influential sires of our day. Prides Generator,
25, was humanely euthanized on July 5, 2001 after
complications from colic.
Pride's Generator has
been a household name among walking horse enthusiasts for
many, many years. According to TWHBEA registration
records, there were 2292 colts sired by Generator making
him the leading production sire of all time. He has been
the Association's Sire of the Year in both total points
(number of offspring) and percentage points (percentage of
show ring winners) for EIGHT STRAIGHT YEARS!!
distinctive coloring of sorrel with a flaxen mane and tail
gave the show ring much flare in the late 70's and early
"I remember the first time I showed him,"
says Gary Edwards. "We were at the trainers' show in
Louisville, Kentucky. We walked into the ring with his
head held high and his white mane and tail flowing. You
could hear a collective gasp from the stands. They'd never
seen anything like him before. This was before even the
Pusher colts began to be popular, and people couldn't get
enough of him."
Gary Edwards of Carl Edwards and
Sons Stables directed Prides Generator throughout his show
ring career. The team captured the two-,three- and
four-year old World Grand Champion titles as well as a
host of other impressive wins.
Gary also had the
privilege of presenting Generator at the 1984 Olympic
Games in Los Angeles in the Cavalcade of Champions daily
exhibitions. "When he walked into that stadium, the crowds
went wild with standing applause and cheers. It gave me
chill bumps to hear them. Generator just had that presence
about him. He was a 'look at me' horse, and he wanted
everyone to know it."
Prides Generator was one
ambassador that was destined to do just what he did. The
stallion was bred by Harlin Hayes at his historic
Harlinsdale Farm in Franklin, Tennessee, and born on
December 2, 1975. He was sold to Robert Lowe, Jr. in 1977
then to Carol Osborn and Dianne Moss in 1978. He won the
Two-Year-Old Stallion Reserve World Championship and the
Two-Year-Old World Grand Championship for them at the 1978
National Celebration with Gary in the irons.
1979, Floyd Perkins and S.W. Beech bought Prides Generator
and he continued in training with Gary at Carl Edwards and
Sons Stables. A few months later, Mr. Perkins became
Generator's sole owner. Generator took control of the
Celebration to win the Three-Year-Old Stallion World
Championship and the Three-Year-Old World Grand
Championship. He returned to the 1980 Celebration to win
the Four-Year-Old Stallion World Championship and the
Junior World Grand Championship.
Ben and Linda
Brogden purchased Generator a few months after his
four-year-old wins, followed by James A. and Billie
Johnson in 1982. At the beginning of 1983, Claude and
Linda Crowley selected Generator to be Linda's amateur
show horse. However, there was already a demand for him as
a sire and it continued to grow. The Crowley's decided to
place Generator at S.W. Beech Stables in Belfast, TN, to
begin his career as a breeding stallion. Little did anyone
know how influential this beautiful horse would become to
this young industry.
Perhaps the late Claude
Crowley had some idea. He told Gary that he was going to
promote Generator as a sire. "Generator would have to pull
it off in the end," remembers Gary, "but Claude was
committed to getting his colts out where people could see
what he produced."
The success of Prides Generator
was not a mistake, his pedigree was filled with Champions
and World Champions, a fact that reinforces the commitment
to well-bred horse. Generator was line bred Wilson Allen.
He was by Pride Of Midnight who produced a legacy of world
champion offspring. Pride Of Midnight was the product of
twice world grand champion Midnight Sun and Pride Of
Stanley, a show mare who won nine Celebration ribbons
Generator's Dam was H.F. Spirits Nell who
was by Spirit Of Midnight. Spirit Of Midnight was the 1959
Reserve World Grand Champion and tied third in the stake
in 1962 and 1963. Generator was the product of a genuine
commitment to continue improving the breed.
Crowley obviously knew that. "There was not a man more
committed to the success of a horse," said Gary. "He
wanted Generator to be the horse for everyone."
Crowleys deliberately kept Generator's stud fee extremely
affordable for a stallion of such quality. And, even as
his popularity grew, they insisted that the stud fee
Keep in mind that this was in the years
before shipped semen transformed the breeding marketplace.
Mares were brought directly to S.W. Breech Stables and
bred at the farm. Due to that volume alone, the decision
was made not to add a shipped semen program to Generator's
books when the technology became available. That decision
remained in effect until his death.
In 1995, Prides
Generator was moved to Waterfall Farms just outside of
Shelbyville. There, Dr. Mike Harry oversaw his breeding
program. Nancy Lynn Beech, granddaughter of S.W. Beech,
tagged along shortly afterwards to handle the contracts
and breeding records for Generator and the other stallions
at the farm. She remembers Generator from her childhood
days and all that he's meant to people. "What he's given
to the industry is tremendous. In his lifetime he's sired
two world grand champions and over one hundred world
champions. That's double what any other stallion has done
in the past twenty years."
Central Georgia Equine
Services in Fort Valley, Georgia, was the home of Prides
Generator for the last three and a half years of his life.
"He was a unique living legend," said owner Charlene Cook,
DVM. "I have yet to see a stallion who could do so much
for a mare. He shortened the head and added a big,
expressive eye and that long, swan-like neck. He shortened
the back and added angle to the hocks. And better yet, he
added natural gait and talent."
Dr. Cook added that
she'd never forget him show. "He was so high-headed, ears
pricked forward with a bold, animated flat walk. Gary
always had him perfectly presented, and I felt sorry for
the judges who had to watch all the other horses in the
class. He was breathtaking in a sea of black horses."
Gary Edwards agreed. "Prides Generator has done so
much for this industry. He was special in every way. He
was easy-going and nice to work with. When he entered the
show ring he had a presence that will probably never be
forgotten. He had every thing a show horse needed, and he
had the proven ability to pass it along to his colts.
There will never be another horse like him."