We recently paid homage to an icon of dedication, of love for people, horses, dogs, tennis and life in Ruth Hughes, who passed away on Nov. 21.
The respect for Ruth was evident in the standing-room only memorial to her at Fasig-Tipton in January. She enriched our lives teaching us to strive to better ourselves as riders and horsemen. She touched so many people in so many aspects of life. She was a Master not only in the fox-hunting field, she loved her horses, Jack Russells, fox hunters and family. She turned out her Pony Clubbers as good, tough riders. She was tough, kind and quite a character in her own right.
We were riding out a set one day. She was on her beloved horse Rudy and she told me, ‘I promised God if he would give me Gail [her late husband], I would give up whipped cream for life.’ I snuck her a look under the brim of my helmet and asked her, ‘did you stick to that?’
Of course she did. A sign of her dedication and deep love for everything she tackled in life.
I asked her if I could use her as a job reference once and she said yes. The person I got the job with told me she had told him I was a true, good horsewoman. That was one of the honors of my life coming from her.
Ruth, you have touched four generations that you have left enriched as riders and better people for having you in our lives.
See you up above. You’re the best. I am sure God wouldn’t mind you eating whipped cream now.
–Linda Dyer, program manager, Blackburn Correctional Complex Second Chances Program