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Maryland breeder-owner Ursula Ayd dies

May 04, 2019

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Ursula (Urs) Joan Ayd, 84, active in Maryland racing as a breeder, owner and advocate for harness racing, died at her home in Lothian, Md., on May 1.

Mrs. Ayd was born Jan. 14, 1935, in Baltimore, Md., to John and Lorraine Mack. She attended high school at the Institute of Notre Dame. She was married to her husband, Joe, for 57 years until his passing in 2008. She received her AA at Essex Community College while working full time at Western Electric-AT&T and raising a family of five, her four children, Mary Jo, Michael, Russell, and Clarissa and husband, Joe. She loved her family and was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother of 10 grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren.

She was also the “Mother” to her colleagues at Western Electric/AT&T during her working career. She was one of the first women to work in a male dominated environment and although she was passed over for promotions because she was a female she held her own and continued to teach other women to be successful. She gained the respect of her colleagues, male and female.

After her retirement she and Joe were introduced to Standardbred racing by her son-in-law, Jim. She was a Standardbred owner/breeder and a longtime advocate for the Maryland Standardbred racing industry. She was a member of the Maryland Horse Council and United States Trotting Association.

“A Mother’s Love Is The Heart of The Family” and she was the foundation and heart of the family. She continued to care for them, even in her death. She left a to-do list upon the arrival of her death. She always took care of others but never wanted the attention on her. She was independent, strong and spoke her mind, yet had a heart bigger than the universe. She was known for her sassy wit, infectious smile and her kind, compassionate spirit for animals. Anyone want a cat, or 2 or 3?

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in her honor to Standardbred Transition Alliance Program, c/o USTA, 6130 S. Sunbury Rd., Westerville, OH 43081 or to your favorite animal charitable organization. Arrangements and services are private.

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