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Equine Death – ER Hope Diamond


ER Hope Diamond and Cindy Nord


by Suzy Lucine


ER Hope Diamond foaled in 1980 on Eddie Raymond’s farm in Hope, R.I. She was by Waseeka’s In Command and out of Headline’s Hey Jude. “I knew she was special as early as four months old,” Raymond said. “She was so smart and all I needed was to bait her with a sugar cube to try anything new.”


Raymond taught the filly to stand, stretch and lead at home, and took her to her first show, the 1981 New England Morgan Show. Both Raymond and Bill Parker showed Hope in the Yearling Filly class, which she won. Parker showed Hope throughout her entire show career.


“Hope was the most gorgeous creature as a yearling,” Parker remembered. At the New England Show, Hope went on to be pinned Junior Champion Mare and Reserve Grand Champion Mare. “She was such a lovely mare to work with.”


After a winter of playing in the field of her owner’s farm, Hope came back in great shape to face her two-year-old show career. For the second year in a row at New England, Parker led the bay mare to top honors in her age group, and then on to Junior Champion and Reserve Grand Champion Mare titles. She was reserve to Ponderosa’s Replica, whom she would meet again less than three months later at the Grand Nationals.


During her first trip to the Morgan Grand Nationals in 1982, Hope won her age group, and was pinned World Junior Champion Mare, and Reserve World Champion Mare, second to Ponderosa’s Replica. At the time, she was the youngest mare to win the Reserve World title. Hope also won the Grand National Sire Sweepstakes Filly Championship.


As a three-year-old, Hope won her first Grand Champion Mare title at New England, defeating Suzy’s Suzette. At the Grand National, Hope won her age group, but didn’t make it back into the winner’s circle that week. Suzy Suzette came out on top with the world title.


During her four-year-old year, Parker brought Hope out under saddle. “It was nice to have such a pretty mare who was also elegant at a trot and could wear the bridle and have attitude,” Parker said.


Throughout the show season, there was a strong rivalry between this very feminine young mare and a bold young stallion, UVM Justice, who was owned by Bill and Janice Pring and shown by Luman Wadhams. At the Connecticut Show, Hope won the Four-Year-Old Park Saddle Mare class and was reserve to Justice in the Junior Park Saddle Championship. At New England, Hope won the Mare class again, but this time, she went on to beat Justice to win the title of Junior Park Saddle Champion. However, at the Grand National, Justice was back in the winner’s circle to receive top honors, and Hope was pinned Reserve World Four-Year-Old Park Saddle Champion.


In addition to her performance title, Hope was also pinned Grand National Four-Year-Old Champion Mare, Reserve World Senior Champion Mare and Reserve World Grand Champion Mare.


Luman Wadhams remembers Hope’s incredible beauty. “I would look across the ring and see a gorgeous horse going down the rail,” he said. “She had a glorious head and a big eye, she was a fantastic mare.”


Parker judged the Grand National in 1985, so Hope’s show career started to wind down. “I was so fortunate to have Hope in my barn,” Parker said. “She arrived just after I finished showing another great mare, Special Kay. Hope had the most beautiful front end, from the tip of her ears on down. She had a well chiseled head and was symmetrically correct.”


At the end of the year, she was sold to Martha DuPont of Nemours Morgan Farm. “I decided to sell her because I knew she would have a good home with Mrs. DuPont,” Raymond said. Hope produced two foals with the Nemours prefix, before being sold to Cindy Nord of Meadow Ridge Farm. “Hope Diamond was the prettiest mare we ever owned,” Mrs. DuPont said.


Hope produced five foals for Nord, all by the many-time World Champion, The Master’s Touch. Several of these offspring have had successful show careers. “Hope was very kind and regal, and always was a joy to be around,” said Barry Dickinson of Meadow Ridge Farm. “She was pastured with Waseeka’s Valiant Lady and Nemours Commandress, and they were the ‘Grand Old Ladies of Meadow Ridge.’”


Long-time Morgan owner and historian Art Perry remembers Hope as “one of the ideal mares of our breed. I would like to have had an offspring from her to add to my breeding program.”

At the age of 27, Hope was laid to rest at Meadow Ridge Farm. Her beauty and intelligence has been passed along to her offspring for younger generations of Morgan owners to enjoy and appreciate.

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