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Illinois horseman Bill Braden, 87, dies

March 13, 2019

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Harry W. “Bill” Braden, 87, of Morton, Ill., formerly of Las Vegas, Nev., died March 11 at his home.

He was born June 8, 1931, in Chicago, Ill., to Harold and Vera Braden. He married Patty Lou Wright on Sept. 24, 1950, in Brownstown, Ill. She proceeded him in death on May 31, 2010. He was also preceded in death by one brother and four sisters.

Surviving are one brother-in-law, Bill (Maddy) Wright; three beloved nephews, Lindsay Wright, Craig (Tammy) Wright and Kevin (Wendy) Wright; two great-nephews, Jordan Wright and Alex Wright; and two great nieces, Taylor Wright and Megan Wright, whom he dearly loved.

Mr. Braden served in the United States Army, where he received the Korean Service Medal, with two bronze stars, for his years of service during the Korean War in the “A Company” of the “453rd Engineer Construction Battalion.”

He also had a life-long love for horses. He worked as a trainer and driver for Standardbreds in Illinois. He and his wife, Patty, raced Standardbreds throughout the country, coast-to-coast. He also was an assistant trainer for Delvin Miller and was proud to have trained Meadow Skipper and raced Darn Safe. He worked for Hayes Fair Acres and won the 1963 Illinois State Fair Colt Stakes with Dandy Date. He and Patty loved experiencing the success of his brother-in-law, Bill Wright’s, Hambletonian horses, Dreamaster and Classic Photo.

He was a member of the USTA, Masonic Lodge, and Morton VFW Post 5921.

Cremation rites have been accorded. A Celebration of Life service will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday (March 14) at Creekwood Apartments, 150 Yordy Rd., in Morton.

Knapp-Johnson Funeral Home and Cremation Center in Morton is handling arrangements.

Memorial contributions may be made to OSF Financial Assistance. Checks may be made payable to Sister Diane Marie McGrew with OSF Financial Assistance written in memo.

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