Steve Brown, who operated Dunroven Stud on historic Walnut Hall Farm in Lexington, KY, with his wife, Martha, and previously managed Walnut Hall Farm, died Sunday evening after battling cancer. He was 81.
Mr. Brown and his wife bred 2012 Kentucky Futurity winner My MVP, Hambletonian Oaks champion Must Be Victory, and many other stakes winners over the years. He also raced young horses, particularly fillies, who were retired to the Dunroven broodmare band. That practice put the filly Madam Cool in the Dunroven broodmare band and she produced the stakes-winning Bold Dreamer 3, 1:55 ($531,258), who has gone on to produce the winners of $2.6 million, among them $1.6 million winner Pampered Princess.
Born April 25, 1932, in Whitesburg, KY, Mr.Brown was the son of the late John T. Brown and Eliza N. Brown. He was preceded in death by one brother, Bill J. Brown. He served in the United States Air Force from 1951 to 1955, including a three-year tour of duty in Germany. He was a 1960 graduate of the University of Kentucky.
Mr. Brown's career began at the Stallion Station and was advanced with the Lexington Trots Breeders Association, which for many years was the owner/operator of The Red Mile and Tattersalls.
Mr. Brown became the manager at Walnut Hall Farm and during his tenure at the nursery the prolific Bergdorf foaled Abercrombie and Bruce Gimble. Mr. Brown was naturally proud of his association with the great Abercrombie, who was voted 1978 Horse of Year. The stakes-winning Bruce Gimble later stood at stud at Walnut Hall Farm.
In 1985, he reinvigorated Dunroven Stud, which he operated with his wife Martha until his death.
In addition to his wife of almost 51 years, he is survived by his sister, Emma Carolyn Bentley of North Little Rock, Arkansas; sisters-in-law Katherine N. Sautter (James), Margaret N. Jewett (Alan Leavitt) and Elizabeth M.Nichols (George Lee); nephews William M. Brown, Willis N.Sautter, Justin G. Sautter (Elizabeth), L. Harkness Jewett (Jennifer), MichaelT. O'Keefe (Rachel) and Berkeley H. O'Keefe (Jennifer); one niece, Shannon E. Redgate (Derek); one great-grandniece, Amanda B. Prescott (Alan D.); and one great-grandnephew, W. Mark Brown.
Funeral services will take place at 11 am Thursday (April 10) at Milward Funeral Home, 159 N. Broadway, Lexington, KY.
Memorial donations may be made to Hospice of the Bluegrass, 2312 Alexandria Dr., Lexington, KY 40504 or the Stable of Memories (the Round Barn), c/o Fredericka Caldwell,1520 Lexington Rd. Georgetown, KY 40324.